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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Pension board proposes wellness plan for 2008

Trustees of the ELCA Board of Pensions approved a proposal to move the church’s health program toward a “wellness” plan. The trustees met in Chicago Feb. 23-25 and took several actions, including proposed plan amendments for 2008 that will put greater emphasis on preventing illness and avoiding health risks.

Proposed changes in the health plan include only one preferred provider organization benefits administrator—Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota. The plan would retain Aetna Global Benefits for staff of ELCA Global Mission deployed outside the U.S. but would discontinue using other Aetna benefits programs.

“We are moving in our plan to a churchwide single vendor for the medical provider,” said John G. Kapanke, board president. The board chose BCBS for its “stronger discounts and greater coverage for all of our members,” he said. “Looking at the match across all of the states and the synods, we found that [BCBS] would be the strongest vendor.”


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