Let’s Talk Business: June 10, 2022

Read this week’s Let’s Talk Business column in The Emporia Gazette. 

The Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce is participating in a new association healthcare program that will help local businesses of all sizes potentially lower their health insurance costs. Chamber Blue of Kansas takes the buying power of more than 37 Chambers throughout the state of Kansas to create one large health insurance group. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas (BCBSKS) estimates the group size could be between 3,000 and 6,000 policies, making it one of the larger insurance groups in the state.

This new association health plan will be available to all Chamber members in good standing who employee two or more W2 employees, as well as to member businesses filing taxes as an S-Corporation or a C-Corporation. Chamber Blue of Kansas will help small, medium, and even large businesses have the buying power of larger groups. This can keep premium costs down for both employees and employers. BCBSKS predicts lower year-to-year premium increases while at the same time offering a variety of robust plans.

There will be several plans offered, giving employees options when it comes to their health insurance. All price structures will be composite rated. A composite rate is an insurance premium based on the average risk profile of a group rather than the risk profile of an individual policyholder. This means that all members of the group pay the same insurance premium and that rate is not based on age or health history.

The first year is the best year to join this plan. In Year One, premiums will be based on a simple demographic; no health histories will be collected. In Year Two and beyond, employers wishing to participate will be rated on their employees’ health histories and can be denied entry into the group. This keeps the group healthier and stable.

An interest survey will be available in August 2022. As part of the survey, BCBSKS will collect your company’s information plus your participating employees’ names, dates of birth, genders, and zip codes. There will be no health questionnaires required for businesses that complete the August interest survey.

Those who participate in this survey will get to view the proposed plan rates in September 2022. Pricing will be the same statewide. You do not have to be a current Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce member to take the survey and view the rates, but you would have to join the Chamber in order to enroll in the plan, which will become active in January 2023. You are not obligated to accept the quote when rates come out in September if the insurance does not fit your needs.

To learn more or to sign up for the interest survey and subsequently receive the proposed rates, please visit emporiakschamber.org/chamber-blue-of-kansas-interest-survey-sign-up/ or contact Jeanine McKenna at the Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce by emailing jmckenna@emporiakschamber.org or calling 620-342-1600.

It’s a great day in Emporia!


“Let’s Talk Business” is a weekly column of the Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce and Visit Emporia. The mission of the Chamber is to be proactive in creating an environment for business and community success, guided by the vision that positive attitudes promote positive actions. Contact us at 620-342-1600 or chamber@emporiakschamber.org and visit our website at www.emporiakschamber.org.