The Brownsville Independent School District Board of Trustees voted unanimously last night to continue with Blue Cross on a new three year contract. This is the first time in living memory that the BISD has kept the same third party administrator for more than three years at a time. Usually changes are made with each school board election and sometimes even sooner.
Common belief in the insurance world is if you get the BISD account, you are good for a maximum of three years. The BISD +$50 million honey pot draws fierce competition from brokers, agents, TPA’s, carriers, PBM’s, PPO’s and ancillary third party intermediaries.
Competition is good for taxpayers.
During the best & final offer period of the RFP Blue Cross came in with aggressive fixed costs. In addition the BISD insurance consultant went through a re-pricing analysis and found BCBS has “the best discounts”, followed by United HealthCare whose discounts represented an estimated +$4 million higher cost over BCBS for the year according to the consultant.
A postmortem analysis of all proposals received by the BISD would be fascinating.
Among school districts BCBS remains the dominant force in the Lower Rio Grande Valley as well as other political subdivisions such as Cameron and Hidalgo County. La Joya Independent School District Board of Trustees voted recently to go with BCBS for plan year 2014-15.
Since 90% of health plan costs are claims, and since many experts believe BCBS has the lowest and best pricing contracts with the provider community, it is a wonder why BCBS does not have 100% of the business, 100% of the time.