Church of the Brethren Newsline
August 17, 2007
Brethren Benefit Trust (BBT) is offering an online resource to locate health insurance, following the decision by the 2007 Annual Conference to phase out the Brethren Medical Plan’s medical insurance component for the Ministers’ Group. This group includes employees of Church of the Brethren congregations, districts, and camps.
BBT has created the resource to support participants in the Ministers’ Group to find medical coverage for themselves and their families, as this component of the Brethren Medical Plan will be closed on Dec. 31. The resource is intended for those with pre-existing conditions who are likely to have a difficult time in obtaining health insurance on their own. People who do not have such conditions are expected to be able to obtain insurance on their own from any insurance provider.
The online resource is a website titled “Insurance Coverage Support Center.” It may be accessed off of the “Insurance Plans” page at http://www.brethrenbenefittrust.org/ (click on “Insurance Services” in the left-hand column).
Through the Insurance Coverage Support Center, employees may view coverage information specific to their states, find answers to frequently asked questions about insurance, and see what’s new with Brethren Benefit Trust insurance.
The website explains how individual states comply with the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). The act guarantees health insurance coverage for individuals, regardless of pre-existing medical condition, who have had 18 months of credible coverage and lose coverage through a plan closure.
For example, if an employee lives in Illinois, he or she will find information about the Illinois Comprehensive Health Insurance Plan (HIPAA-CHIP) including information about rates in different areas of the state, eligibility requirements, coverage highlights, how to enroll, and a brochure.
BBT also is offering to help participants of the Ministers’ Group find other group coverage that may be available through organizations such as AARP. For more information contact Insurance Services staff at 800-746-1505 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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The Church of the Brethren Newsline is produced by Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford, director of news services for the Church of the Brethren General Board. Nevin Dulabaum and Jay Wittmeyer contributed to this report. Newsline stories may be reprinted if Newsline is cited as the source. To receive Newsline by e-mail go to http://listserver.emountain.net/mailman/listinfo/newsline. Submit news to the editor at email@example.com. For more Church of the Brethren news and features, subscribe to “Messenger” magazine; call 800-323-8039 ext. 247.