On Friday, North Carolina Chamber Services, Inc., an affiliate of the NC Chamber, announced it will offer a private health insurance and benefits exchange through CieloStar, a nationwide healthcare payment and benefit technology company formerly known as OutsourceOne. Through the North Carolina Chamber MarketPlace, North Carolina companies will be able to offer employees access to a one-stop, online marketplace to shop for health insurance.
For any private exchange to work there must be choices. North Carolina Chamber Services, Inc. and CieloStar are in discussions with a number of carriers. Similar to travel websites that allow consumers to shop for airfare, hotels and rental cars in one place, CieloChoice will offer a variety of insurance plans for North Carolina consumers to choose from, including health, dental, Medicare, vision and more. Coupled with competitive price comparisons, employees can create a plan based on their specific needs and budget.
Due to the increased uncertainty in predicting costs, we believe that more employers will move to what’s called a defined contribution approach for health care. This allows employers to set a defined contribution and each individual can go out and secure coverage for what they need most. Employers in turn can budget for the defined contribution and a set increase each year, which brings an enormous amount of certainty to one of a company’s historically most uncertain processes. Additionally, a private exchange ensures that employees have control over the kinds of benefits they have. Jim Simpson, COO of the NC Chamber, was able to discuss with the News and Observer – read more here.
Stay tuned in the coming weeks for more information about the North Carolina Chamber MarketPlace. Additionally, Dr. John Reynolds, CieloStar CEO, will be a featured speaker at our Health Care Conference this Thursday so that will be an excellent opportunity to hear more about the defined contribution approach. I hope to see you there.
Gary J. Salamido
Vice President, Government Affairs
North Carolina Chamber