School district employees face choice on health care options

School district employees face choice on health care options

MIDLAND, TX (KWES) - At Monday night's Board of Trustee's meeting, David Garcia, CFO for the Midland Independent School District says around 1800 employees will get to choose to either stay in the Care I health insurance plan where the district pays 100%, or upgrade to the Care II plan also known as the Buy Up Plan where employees are given more benefits but will have to pay $70 per month.

"Right now we've got about 30% of our employees that are on the buy up plan and they are utilizing almost 50% of the total health care costs. We're just trying to balance it out a little bit and make the plan more effective," said Garcia.

Garcia said in the base plan there is a $3000 deductible and with the Care II plan employees will have a $1500 deductible. His report stated, if an employee were to upgrade to the buy up plan then co-pays for visits to a primary care doctor and specialist would decrease by five dollars.

"Typically you would see a higher cost in an office visit for a specialist versus a primary care physician," said Garcia.

Garcia added the changes to the plan were made to give employees the best option for them.

"This has nothing to do with the TRE failure, the budget, and the general fund at all. This is specifically geared towards our health care plan and trying to keep that plan viable and solvent," said Garcia.

Garcia tells NewsWest 9 the changes are expected to go into effect in January 2017.

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