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OBA Employee Benefit Program

It is hard to believe that it is August already! Time moves so quickly. This correspondence is to remind you about the OBA's Employee Benefit Program as you approach your bank's renewal date. The OBA Insurance Agency is offering a complete portfolio of fully insured Employee Benefits that we believe will help your bank better control your employee benefit costs.

There has been some confusion about this new Employee Benefit Program. It is not to be confused with any endorsement that has been agreed upon in the past. This program was introduced last year and is totally managed by the OBA Insurance Agency and its (banker) board of directors. This new health program takes the place of the endorsement of Bankers Financial Benefits which expired on April 30. Bankers Financial Benefits is no longer the endorsed provider of health insurance programs for member banks, primarily because of the inherent conflict that exists between community banks in Oklahoma and the Blue Cross Blue Shield-owned "Blue Healthcare Bank."

The insurance company we're using does not have an interest in a bank, as several current providers do including the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Ours is an "A"-rated company (Trustmark) and administered by FiServ Health Benefits out of Wichita, Kan. FiServ has all the back-room capabilities within their offices, which allows us tremendous flexibility and control of the product design, pricing, and assistance with claims processing.

By leveraging the collective strength of your industry's purchasing power, we can make an even greater impact on our product pricing and hold the premiums more stable over time. By coming together you will help us unite and gain market power.

Several state bankers associations across the country have used this leverage to great success for their member banks. We're doing so with a fully-insured product from an entity that is not a competitor for community banks. Additionally, it is another way of supporting your Association and reducing its dues dependence. In essence, you're paying yourself rather than a third-party or a competing financial services organization.

Our portfolio offers several fully insured medical plans with widely varying deductibles and flexibility in your choice of PPO networks. We're working with the Bainswest Member Agencies across the state to help us in our marketing effort, and we hope you'll give us an opportunity to save you some money.

Having the ability to choose your network provides you and your bank with added flexibility that allows for more choice – and more cost savings for your bank. The new High Deductible Health Plans, (HDHPs) with HSAs are also available as an option. Our HDHPs pay at 100 percent after the deductible has been met and advocates a clearer understanding to your employees of how the product works and benefits them.

For more information please, contact Karen Tims at the OBA at 405-424-5252 or by e-mail at karen@oba.com.

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