2011-2012 RMS Annual Report
Annual Report Highlights:
About two years ago, the Health Benefits Trust switched to Medcost for program administration. The change has resulted in approximately $1.7 million in savings.
A new tool, “HealtheReports,” provides valuable data that helps manage the cost of health procedures.
In January 1, 2012, we began using PharmAvail for pharmacy benefits, and we expect this change to result in significant savings.
Our wellness program, which is available at no cost to members, has expanded and is helping members statewide make wiser health decisions.
The Property/Liability and Workers’ Compensation trusts are working to operate more efficiently and reduce claims.
We have learned valuable data about loss drivers in order to develop ways to members promote healthier working environments and reduce claims.
The “Slower is Faster” police driver training program has become a resource for driving training nationwide.
The N.C. League of Municipalities’ three Risk Management Services insurance trusts have provided quality services to local government for three decades. The three trusts, Health Benefits (Municipal Insurance Trust of N.C.), Workers’ Compensation (N.C. Interlocal Risk Management Agency) and Property/Liability (Interlocal Risk Financing Fund of N.C.) exist because they were demanded by our members and remain member-driven.
Operations of the trusts are governed by a 14-member Board of Trustees, chaired by Goldsboro Mayor Alfonzo King. The Board works diligently on behalf of all members to help ensure that the trusts are financially sound and efficiently operated. It is because of the Board’s leadership, and the support of the membership, that the trusts remain successful.
The Board of Trustees and the League staff continue to make improvements to the trusts that allow them to operate more effectively, save money and ensure the future stability. We would like to share some of the accomplishments for the past year.
Health Benefits Trust
About two years ago, we switched to Medcost for the program’s administrator. Medcost has proved to be a valuable partner. The services available to us have increased, and the change has resulted in administrative cost savings of approximately $1.7 million. Administrative costs are down to 10 percent (from nearly 15 percent), which has resulted in a 4 percent savings on rates.
Additionally, we began using a tool called “HealtheReports” that allows members to be an informed partner in managing the cost of their own health care. This tool shows data for dozens of different procedures and includes information like pricing and patient ratings. For example, gall bladder removal can range from $8,500 to more than $17,000 in the triangle area. These reports are available to your employees and they can be shared with their primary care physicians, who, through the patient referral system, are often the people who help you decide where your procedures take place. The availability of this information helps manage claims costs. HealtheReports is available online and via an iPhone/iPad app.
We also began using PharmAvail to manage pharmacy benefits as of January 1, 2012. An analysis shows that this move could result in significant savings, based on the structure of our contract.
There have also been positive results from our wellness program, which is available at no cost to all health benefits trust members. The effectiveness of the wellness program is best described by the following tribal story:
“When I was first approached about participating in the Wellness Initiative that the League sponsors, I wasn’t too interested. I’m too old to start now. After thinking about it, I decided to give it a shot. Besides, they told me it didn’t involve a lot of exercise. [I thought,] “I can do this.”
After our first wellness evaluation, I looked at the results and decided that I really did need to do something about my health. Thus began my lifestyle change.
At our second wellness evaluation, I was surprised to find that I was the most improved employee participating in the program. Overall, I lost 40 pounds, went from a size 40 waist to a 38 (37 now) from a 17 ½ shirt to a 16 ½, and had a big improvement in my blood pressure. My blood pressure was so good that my doctor took me off one of my blood pressure medicines.[My] cholesterol has definitely improved.
A big thing is that I feel so much better. As a result of feeling better, I am much more active than I used to be.
Now I’m at a below average risk for Coronary Heart Disease and Congestive Heart Failure for people my age. I am at average risk for having a stroke or diabetes. I’m sure if I increase my exercise, I can reduce my risk even further. This is something that I have started working on. I am walking more now for exercise, not just at work.
The League’s Wellness Initiative was the catalyst that I needed to get me started to better health. I turned 65 in April [of 2012] and I retired July 1. If I can do it, anyone can – you just need to take that first step.”
--Chief of Police, Eastern N.C. Town
Property/Liability and Workers’ Compensation
Similarly, the Property/Liability and Worker’s Compensation trusts have been working to operate more efficiently and determine ways to not only help provide members with the safest environment for their employees, but to also reduce claims.
When we do receive claims, we do our best to process them in a manner that best benefits our members, as demonstrated in this tribal story:
On behalf of [eastern N.C. town], thank you very very much for getting this case settled. We were looking at years of expensive litigation – probably in federal court - and this settlement avoids all that.
The truth is that you always come to the aid of my municipal governments when they find themselves in harm’s way and for this I am forever grateful. I try to steer my governments away from trouble, but this business of having employees and serving the public just seems to produce unavoidable claims.
--Town Attorney, Eastern N.C.
The RMS team is conducting a comprehensive data analysis to determine what exactly is causing our losses. The initial findings have provided valuable information. For example, 45 percent of workers’ compensation claims are filed by employees who have filed a previous claim in the past five years. The cost of these claims exceeds $26 million. Further, one employee has filed 14 claims in five years. This information points to the need to help members understand the importance of training, personal protective equipment, safety policies and good hiring practices. These measures will lead to safer working environments and, likely, reduced claims.
RMS offers a number of training opportunities for members and has worked to improve these offerings. History has shown a large number of claims for both property/liability and workers’ compensation are from law enforcement, so a good deal of focus has been put into providing more effective training and education opportunities.
One such training program is developed around police driver training. With significant contributions and input from Hillsborough Town Manager Eric Peterson, RMS produced a police driver training video entitled “Slower is Faster.” The 27-minute video proved to be so useful that the N.C. Justice Academy, the Association of Law Enforcement Emergency Response Trainers, and the Georgia Municipal Association are all using our video to educate police officers and others about safe pursuit driving techniques. Further, it has been incorporated into training required by the N.C. Criminal Justice Education and Training Standards Commission and posted on the ALERT International website. In addition, five police driver training seminars were held across the state. In 2013, we plan to roll out our hands-on driving training for police, targeted to chiefs and training officers.
Below are tribal stories from the Police Driver Training and “Slower is Faster.”
“I attended the Police Driver Training in Asheville yesterday and learned a lot from it. I would like to thank you and the league for hosting it. I think a lot of departments, mine included, do not do enough to promote safe driving. I am sharing this information with my town manager and hope that it leads us to be able to better train police officers.”
--Chief of Police, Tryon
The North Carolina Justice Academy is a non-profit state law enforcement training facility. Each year we produce mandated training for law enforcement agencies statewide... The video “Slower Is Faster” is a great resource and would fit right in with the initiatives that we are trying to get across to the officers(e.g.. wearing seatbelts, not speeding, and wearing bulletproof vests).
This material will help thousands of officers across the state of North Carolina better serve the public through awareness and education.
--Terry D. Miller, North Carolina Justice Academy
Financial statements for each of the three trusts are attached, below are the highlights of our financial stability.
The Health Benefits Trust increased net assets by just under $1 million, with total net assets of $20.6 million. Losses constituted 88 percent of premium, with expenses as 11 percent of premium. The Trust has an investment income of $786,000 (not including capital gains and losses).
Click here for the full Health Benefits (MIT) financial statement.
The Property/Liability Trust has a net income of $4.6 million. The operating revenue exceeded claims and expenses by $2 million. Investment income (not including capital gains and losses) totaled $2.6 million, representing 14 percent of the premium. Losses were 63 percent of the premium, and expenses were 26 percent.
Click here for the full Property/Liability (IRFFNC) financial statement.
The Workers’ Compensation Trust had a net income of just under $2 million. Claims and expenses exceeded revenue by $800,000. The net assets/loss ratio for the trust is 84 percent, and the investment ratio is 13 percent, totaling $2.8 million (not including capital gains and losses).
Click here for the full Workers’ Compensation (NCIRMA) financial statement.
Click here for a printable, PDF version of the report.