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TheStreet Open House

Mercer Will Offer Clients Access To New Connextions Multicarrier Insurance Exchange To Help Them Manage Retiree Health Care Benefits

Mercer, a global consulting leader in talent, health, retirement and investments, along with Connextions, Inc., an innovative technology and business services partner to the health care industry, today launched myCustomHealth™, a new national Medicare retirement exchange to help employers minimize administrative burdens and cost, while offering retirees a broader choice of benefit options.

myCustomHealth TM relieves employers of the administrative burden associated with managing retiree insurance issues and annual plan review and renewal by providing a solution that integrates retiree medical insurance, including pharmacy, dental, vision and other benefit options, with wellness and other related services. The exchange features the industry’s only fully integrated Retiree Reimbursement Account, offered by Connextions’ parent company Optum, and the only default plan option, which will provide coverage for retirees who do not actively select a plan.

In addition, myCustomHealth TM delivers a positive enrollment experience for seniors through the largest call center of its kind that is staffed with “retiree-centric” advisers. Call center representatives serve customers continuously, from during their enrollment process to answering their questions throughout their coverage period to advocacy with their selected health insurance carrier when needed.

“US employers are struggling under the burden of ever-increasing retiree medical insurance costs. They’re looking for a mechanism that allows them to offer coverage in a way that carefully manages their financial obligations while offering retirees affordable options based on individual needs,” said Julio A. Portalatin, President and CEO of Mercer. “A market shift is taking place that employers need to explore.”

According to Mercer’s National Survey of Employer-Sponsored Health Plans, the prevalence of medical plans for Medicare-eligible retirees continues to decline. However, among very large employers, roughly one-third still provide coverage to retirees 65 and older.

“Some large employers want to continue providing medical and other benefits to their Medicare-eligible retirees, but prefer to provide the retiree with a choice of benefit options and give them a subsidy to help pay for individual insurance coverage. Providing benefits through an exchange helps an employer ease the transition for their retirees and guides them through the insurance selection process,” said Sharon Cunninghis, US leader of Mercer’s health and benefits business. “The Connextions exchange will empower retirees with more benefit choices and personal assistance in choosing their benefits, while allowing employers to better manage costs and future liabilities.”

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