Covenant Churches, Retirees to Share $800,000 ‘Surprise Benefit’

Post a Comment » Written on March 1st, 2007     
Filed under: News
CHICAGO, IL (March 1, 2007) – Local Evangelical Covenant churches and retirees will be pleasantly surprised to learn that their Bethany Benefit medical and dental insurance premium for the month of June has been waived – a move that is expected to collectively save local churches nearly $800,000.

The Bethany Benefit plan includes not only medical and dental coverage, but also life and long-term disability insurance, as well as an Employee Assistance Program. The modest June premium for life and long-term care is not included in the waiver, however.

Bethany Benefit coverage is available to retirees, Covenant missionaries, local Covenant church pastors and employees of local churches, conference and denominational ministries, as well as other Covenant institutions, such as camps. Surviving spouses of pastors and missionaries also are included.

Additional savings of $90,000 will be shared by a number of affiliated Covenant ministries that also are covered by the plan.

This unusual “medical premium holiday,” approved by the Covenant Board of Pensions and Benefits, is made possible by three key developments: better-than-expected financial results, outstanding work on the part of Covenant Director of Finance Elliott Johnson in competitively pricing and repositioning medical and dental coverages with new providers, and the impact of negotiated provider discounts and administrative cost savings achieved by working with other church denominations – collectively, more than 250,000 lives are represented.

“The good news on the premium holiday in June . . . will be celebrated in our churches and our conference,” comments one conference superintendent upon learning the news. “There will be rejoicing to be sure,” notes another.

As a result of the special June premium waiver, Bethany medical premiums for local Covenant churches during 2007 will be 3.5 percent less than in 2006.

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