10 Oct 2019
CI Mental Health

Supporting Mental Health in the Workplace

The workplace is especially vulnerable to the financial impacts of mental illness, and employers are increasingly looking to brokers for support. On #WorldMentalHealthDay, start a conversation with your employer groups using these three ideas to incorporate #mentalhealth into employee benefit packages.
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02 Oct 2019

BCS Financial partners with Corax to expand cyber product for small business

Corax to help BCS cyber insurance customers mitigate risk

Oakbrook Terrace, Ill./London – Oct. 2, 2019 – #NationalCybersecurityAwarenessMonth – BCS Financial (BCS) and Corax are to partner on an innovative cyber liability product that will help small businesses understand and mitigate their cyber risk, whilst insuring themselves against the financial impact of a cyber attack.

Small businesses that purchase BCS cyber liability insurance coverage will gain access to a bespoke Corax risk report which will highlight any areas of weakness in their cyber hygiene and technology resilience, as well as an accurate view of potential cyber loss costs.

“At BCS, we are committed to helping our policyholders understand their cyber risks and protect their business,” says Chad Chaffin, vice president, Property & Casualty Underwriting. “We are thrilled to incorporate Corax’s state-of-the-art risk reports as part of a suite of value-added tools policyholder can access alongside our insurance offering.”

“Small businesses need more than an insurance payout if they become victim to a cyber attack,” said Jonathan Pope, Corax CEO. “They also need help pre- and post-breach. Corax is working with BCS to give small businesses the information they need to understand the true financial cost of their cyber risk, and how to mitigate it.”

BCS cyber liability insurance products are underwritten by BCS Insurance Company, OH (Administrative offices: Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois). BCS is the sixth largest writer of admitted cyber products in the U.S. per A.M. Best. Products are available via insurance brokers in 49 states and the District of Columbia. Corax is the leading and largest source of cyber exposure data and predicted loss costs of breach and network outage events.

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ABOUT CORAX

Corax is a cyber risk modelling and prediction platform which leverages its proprietary data on the security and technology resilience of more than 10 million interconnected companies to provide faster and more accurate benchmarking, predictions and expected loss costs of cyber events to individual and groups of companies worldwide. By using predictive cyber models that are validated by the insurance industry and driven by the most extensive data available, Corax is a leading provider of financial and probabilistic quantification of cyber risk at micro and macro economic levels and in identifying potential ‘points of failure’ in services, service providers and service locations across portfolios and across the internet.

Corax is used by (re)insurance carriers to accurately underwrite and manage cyber risk exposure, and by insurance brokers and agents to provide clients with precise cyber risk assessment and cover recommendations. Corax also unlocks value in cyber for insurers, brokers and information security consultancies seeking targeted B2B lead generation. Corax supports a wide range of other business challenges requiring cyber insights, such as cyber risk management, compliance and third party assessment, investment due diligence and corporate credit rating.

Founded in 2014 in London and San Francisco to be at the heart of insurance and technology, Corax has grown to over 200 users worldwide since being commercially available to the insurance industry in late 2017. To find out more about the Corax platform please visit coraxcyber.com.

For more information, contact abipope@coraxcyber.com or info@coraxcyber.com

ABOUT BCS FINANCIAL

BCS Financial Corporation has more than 70 years of experience delivering a wide-range of insurance and financial solutions for Blue Cross and Blue Shield organizations nationwide. Through its subsidiaries, BCS Insurance Company and 4 Ever Life Insurance Company, BCS is licensed in all 50 states and is rated A- (Excellent) by A.M. Best. BCS Financial is headquartered in Oakbrook Terrace, Ill. Learn more at bcsf.com.

For more information, please contact Nathan Post at 630.472.7860 or npost@bcsf.com.

 

 

 

01 Oct 2019
Cyber

Cyber Solutions from BCS

It’s #NationalCybersecurityAwarenessMonth, a good reminder that businesses of all types should assess their cyber security risk. #Cyberinsurance could be an important component of your risk management strategies. BCS has four targeted #cyber #insurance products to fit a variety of business needs.
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24 Sep 2019
EssentialCare

EssentialCare Critical Illness Named Insurance Nexus ‘2019 New Product of the Year’ for Groundbreaking Severe Mental Health Coverage

EssentialCare Critical Illness Takes Home ‘New Product of the Year’ and ‘North American Contribution to Society’ Awards at 2019 Insurance Nexus Awards Gala For Severe Mental Illness Rider

BCS is pleased to announce it is the recipient of the 2019 Insurance Nexus ‘New Product of the Year’ and ‘North American Contribution to Society’ awards for the EssentialCare Group Critical Illness product.

“As healthcare costs continue to rise, a majority of the population is ill-prepared for the toll a critical illness diagnosis or life-changing health event could take on their lives, and their wallets,” said Bruce Bahn, vice president, Product. “With EssentialCare Critical Illness, we have introduced groundbreaking coverage for four of the most prevalent serious mental health conditions, recognizing a severe mental illness as a ‘critical illness’ under the policy, and protecting consumers from the financial burden of a critical illness diagnosis, whether physical or mental.”

In the U.S., over 44 million adults have a mental health condition, with nearly five percent of all Americans experiencing a severe mental illness (Mental Health America, 2019). The World Health Organization ranks major depressive disorder as the fourth leading cause of disability worldwide. Yet, until EssentialCare Critical Illness was brought to market, CI policies excluded coverage for severe mental illnesses.

With EssentialCare Group Critical Illness, the policy provides fixed payments directly to the insured in the event of a covered critical illness diagnosis. The product includes a first-of-its-kind optional rider that provides coverage for four severe mental health conditions: severe major depressive disorder, severe bipolar I disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, and schizophrenia, classifying them as a critical illness under the policy and providing needed financial support in the event of one of these diagnoses.

“EssentialCare Group Critical Illness (CI) is an innovative solution to help address the financial challenges facing today’s health insurance consumers,” said James Drew, senior vice president, Marketing, Product & Strategic Ventures. “This recognition is a credit to the hard work and dedication of our team at BCS who worked tirelessly to create something new and innovative. We are proud to be the first to bring this coverage to the U.S. market, and to play a part in supporting mental health in America.”

BCS launched the EssentialCare Group Critical Illness product in April 2019. Underwritten by BCS Insurance Company, the product is available exclusively through BCS brokers and the BCS Insurance Agency. For more information, visit bcsf.com. If you are a broker interested in selling EssentialCare Group Critical Illness, please visit bcsf.com/criticalillness.

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Contact:

Nathan Post
Vice President, Marketing
BCS Financial
npost@bcsf.com
630.472.7860

About BCS Financial

BCS Financial Corporation has more than 70 years of experience delivering a wide-range of insurance and financial solutions for Blue Cross and Blue Shield organizations nationwide. Through its subsidiaries, BCS Insurance Company and 4 Ever Life Insurance Company, BCS is licensed in all 50 states and is rated A- (Excellent) by A.M. Best. BCS Financial is headquartered in Oakbrook Terrace, Ill. Learn more at bcsf.com.​

 

 

17 Sep 2019

Meet the Team – IT

Observed every third Tuesday in September, National IT Professionals Day honors all those in information technology who keep our businesses connected. To celebrate, we highlight Donte Lee, Manager, Network Administration.

Q: Describe your/your team’s role at BCS.

A: As the Network Administration Manager, my team and I handle all things helpdesk and IT Infrastructure.

Q: What do you like most about your job?

A: Technology plays a big role in allowing flexibility. Being able to balance home and work life is very important to me. Also, I love the personal progress and lifelong learning within my job. My motivation is to be a little more sophisticated every day.

Q: What skills does someone need to succeed in an IT role?

A: Have patience, stay curious, and have a positive attitude.

Q: Describe your department in three words.

A: Talented, innovative, and inclusive

Q: What is one thing on your bucket list?

A: I would love to obtain my private pilot’s license.

 

Happy National IT Professionals Day to our entire IT team!

29 Aug 2019

Meet the Team – Sales

This month we meet Matt Gibson, Director, Business Development. Matt spends his days working with clients, so we asked him for his insights working on our Sales team.

Q: What do you like most about your role?

A: I love meeting new people and building relationships.  Some of the relationships have lasted for many years and will continue for many years into the future.  A close second has to be closing a big deal, and ultimately bringing new business to BCS.

Q: What skills does someone need to succeed in a sales role?

A: To excel in sales, one needs to have the ability to listen to each client and suggest solutions to their issues.  The solutions may or may not be something that BCS can bring to the table, but it shows that we are all collectively working toward a common goal.

Q: What drew you to BCS?

A: I have worked at BCS for about 3.5 years, and in my prior life, I worked at HCSC for just shy of 15 years.  What drew me to BCS was the chance to work at a smaller company with the goal of being better able to impact change.  Also knowing that BCS plays a major role within BCBS Plans made the decision a little easier.

Q: If you could swap jobs with anyone for a day, who would it be and why?

A: I would want to be a hunting guide.  I first started hunting when I was 8 and have done it ever since.  I love nature and being a guide would allow me to be outside watching the world go by.  It would also provide for the ability to meet new people from all walks of life.

Q: Rumor has it you have quite the sock collection. How many pairs do you think you own?

A: The rumor is true, I do have quite the sock collection.  The collection has grown over the years and I probably have close to 50 pairs of colorful dress socks.  Color and design are critical and the more color, the better in my opinion.  Believe it or not, the socks tend to be a simple way to open conversation.

27 Aug 2019

BCS Financial Adopts Blue Health Intelligence’s Predictive Model to Help Health Plan Members with Serious and Expensive Health Conditions Earlier

To view the full press release via BHI, click here.

CHICAGO (August 27, 2019) – BCS Financial Corporation (BCS), which provides insurance and financial products to Blue Cross Blue Shield Companies, has selected Blue Health Intelligence®’s (BHI®) award-winning predictive algorithm to identify members who have or may develop health conditions that cost more than $250,000 a year. The goal is to help individual Blue Plans work with these high cost claimants (HiCCs) to improve their health outcomes and mitigate escalating expenses.

While HiCCs represent fewer than one in 1,000 of all Blue Plan members, they are expected to generate nearly $20 billion in annual costs by 2022. In developing meaningful solutions for this vulnerable population, BHI found that three of every five high cost members are new or emerging, and many suffer from heart disease, cancer, or neurological disorders. The remaining 40% have recurring high costs each year, and typically suffer from chronic conditions such as blood disorders, metabolic illnesses, and renal disease. Contributing factors for all HiCCs include specialty drugs, new genetic therapies, and advanced treatments such as cancer immunotherapy.

The BCS and BHI HiCC solution, currently being implemented by five Blue Plans, is called the High Cost Predictor Algorithm (HCPA). It uses machine learning to efficiently achieve the needle-in-a-haystack work of identifying who among tens of millions of Plan members will reach or exceed more than $250,000 in annual costs, including a few thousand whose care is expected to exceed $1 million per year. Earlier this year, BHI was recognized by MedTech Awards as having the best predictive analytics solution.

“BCS is committed to helping Blue Plans and their members achieve high-quality healthcare at a lower cost through a variety of tools and reinsurance solutions, and we are thrilled to add this leading-edge solution to our cost-containment offerings,” said Peter Costello, BCS Financial’s president and chief operating officer.

BHI specifically trained and validated the HCPA using longitudinal claims information from more than 190 million Americans in its National Data Repository, along with publicly available socioeconomic and claims derived data. BHI’s data scientists evaluated thousands of predictive variables to isolate the clinical complexities, utilization patterns, and contextual factors most closely linked to extremely high costs.

“The combination of BHI’s machine learning, artificial intelligence, and clinical validation make these predictions extremely scalable, actionable, and accurate,” said Swati Abbott, BHI’s CEO. “As a result, BHI is proud to be supporting BCS’ early identification efforts to help lower members’ high costs and improve their health experiences.”

The HCPA is now part of the BCS Risk Navigator suite of cost-containment solutions. Using its National Data Repository, BHI augments the predictive model output with additional historical insights on each member to aid nurse reviewers.

20 Aug 2019
BCS Financial Icon

BCS Financial’s Groundbreaking EssentialCare Line Addresses Mental Health, Named Finalist in 2019 Insurance Nexus Awards

Recognizing mental health and the rising costs of out-of-pocket medical expenses as a growing concern, BCS Financial’s efforts earn recognition as a finalist for the Insurance Nexus New Product of the Year Award.

BCS Financial’s progressive EssentialCare Group Critical Illness product line has been announced as a finalist for the 2019 Insurance Nexus New Product of the Year Award, in addition to the North American Contribution to Society Award. BCS is approaching mental health with a renewed vigor, addressing the issue head-on with its innovative mental health rider, which provides coverage for severe mental illness. The EssentialCare Critical Illness policy provides coverage for up to 35 of the most pervasive critical illnesses, plus eight childhood conditions.

“Our recently launched EssentialCare Group Critical Illness product was nominated for this award because of its new-to-market product feature that provides coverage for those suffering from a severe mental illness,” said Bruce Bahn, Vice President, Product Development at BCS. “While the industry has done an excellent job providing financial protection for physical conditions, a mental illness can be just as debilitating and life-disrupting. We are proud to be the first to bring this coverage to the U.S. market and to be recognized by industry peers.”

The annual Insurance Nexus Award ceremony is the biggest celebration in insurance, held to celebrate the most innovative and passionate movers and shakers on the front lines. This September, the gala will bring together dedicated insurance teams to celebrate the best and brightest in the insurance industry. The black-tie gala is set to take place on Sept. 12 at the Hilton Chicago.

“This recognition is a reflection of the hard work and dedication of a large cross-functional team that has worked to develop and bring this product to market. BCS is honored to be amongst top names in the industry on the list of finalists in two award categories. Congratulations to all the finalists,” Bahn said.

For more information about the awards, visit the website at https://events.insurancenexus.com/awards/. For more information on the EssentialCare Group Critical Illness product, visit bcsf.com.

About BCS Financial

BCS Financial Corporation has more than 70 years of experience delivering a wide range of insurance and financial solutions for Blue Cross and Blue Shield organizations nationwide. Through its subsidiaries, BCS Insurance Company and 4 Ever Life Insurance Company, BCS is licensed in all 50 states and is rated A- (Excellent) by A.M. Best. BCS Financial is headquartered in Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois. Learn more at bcsf.com.

About Insurance Nexus

Situated between London’s Silicon Roundabout and the City, Insurance Nexus is at the innovative heart of an industry undergoing significant disruption and innovation. Insurance Nexus is the central hub for insurance executives. Through in-depth industry analysis, targeted research, niche events and quality content, the team provides the industry with a platform to network, discuss, learn and shape the future of the insurance industry.

Contact:
Nathan Post
​Vice President, Marketing
BCS Financial
​npost@bcsf.com
630.472.7860

Emma Sheard​
General Manager
Insurance Nexus
emma.sheard@insurancenexus.com
+44 (0) 207 422 4349

17 Jul 2019

Meet the Team – Product Development

Bruce Bahn, Vice President, Product Development shares a day-in-the-life of the Product Development team at BCS, and provides additional insights into the recent launch of our EssentialCare Accident and Critical Illness policies.

Q: Describe your/your team’s role at BCS.
A: The Product function at BCS Financial contributes to the growth and profitability of the organization by leading the selection, development, and maintenance of the BCS product portfolio. We are involved in a wide variety of projects which can range from strategic investments and partnerships in new businesses to new and improved features of our current product portfolio. Our key value-add is (to collaborate with business and a functional leaders) to ensure that BCS makes the best decisions in selecting and developing new and improved products incorporating a fact-based view of the customer, the marketplace, competitive set and industry environment.

Q: Tell us about a project you are working on now.
A: While I’ve had the opportunity to work on a very diverse set of projects in my first four years at BCS, the most significant project I’ve been involved with is leading the development of our new portfolio of supplemental health products including Hospital Indemnity, Critical Illness, and Accident Insurance. Like BCBS health insurance, these are products that are sold via expert agents and brokers to employers who in turn offer them to their employees as part of their benefits package. Over the last couple of years, a BCS cross-functional team has worked diligently to develop, file, and launch market-leading products that offer innovative benefits, product features, and broker / customer support capabilities. The effort to design comprehensive and flexible products for a broad range of employer sizes and needs (100-10,000+ employees) and obtain approval for all three products in all 51 states and jurisdictions has been a significant undertaking. July 2019 is the milestone month for our formal market launch with approved products in as many as 75% of country with the expectation for full nationwide availability by the end of the year. Because we are a relatively new competitor, I suspect it will take some time for the market to recognize everything BCS is bringing to the market with this new portfolio. However, given the scale of the opportunity and continued growth of the supplemental health benefits market, I see tremendous future opportunity for BCS and its’ owners.

Q: What’s your favorite project you’ve worked on?
A: For me, the most rewarding aspects of new product development are those somewhat rare occasions when you can meaningfully add to the value that a product provides a customer in new or unique way. In reviewing numerous critical illness insurance product filings from established competitors, it was apparent that they all did a very good in providing customers with the essential financial support in the event of a serious physical ailment. However, none of the products I reviewed included a benefit for those inflicted with a serious mental illness. To me this was a clear gap in the coverage that BCS had the opportunity to address. So with the help of our actuarial partners, we developed a special rider that provides a benefit when a BCS EssentialCare critical illness policyholder is diagnosed with the three most common kinds of serious mental health conditions: Major Depressive Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and Schizophrenia. This new-to-market solution can provide a needed financial support if a person’s mental illness disrupts their life in the same way as a physical condition.

Q: Describe the perfect day off.
A: A walk along the Lake Michigan shore on a beautiful summer day with my family and our dogs.

Q: What’s one non-insurance product you can’t live without?
A: The amount and pace of innovation is the greatest it’s ever been. So many new products will be emerging in the 5-10 years that will address needs we didn’t even know we had. The process of exchanging information will be at the heart of many of these new solutions for daily living, health care delivery, financial services, etc. So while it’s a predictable answer, I’m going to say the product I couldn’t live without is the smartphone. It is and will continue to be at the very center of information exchange at a personal level.

08 Jul 2019
EssentialCare

BCS Financial Announces New EssentialCare Accident and Critical Illness Products

BCS Financial, a national insurance organization owned by all 36 Blue Cross Blue Shield Plans, announces today it has expanded its EssentialCare line of products to include Group Accident and Group Critical Illness policies. The products, underwritten by BCS Insurance Company, help protect consumers from the rising costs of out-of-pocket medical expenses.

“Research shows us that many Americans with health insurance struggle to pay for deductibles, copays, and coinsurance, leaving them at financial risk,” said BCS Financial Senior Vice President, Marketing, Product, and Strategic Ventures, James Drew. “Ancillary products like Accident, Critical Illness, and Hospital Indemnity can help bridge the gap and offer financial protection when a serious accident, injury, or illness occurs.”

EssentialCare Group Accident Indemnity and Critical Illness join the Hospital Indemnity product launched Fall 2018 to create a suite of easy, affordable, and adaptable solutions for employers and their employees. All products include:

·         Guaranteed issue, with no networks or coordination of benefits

·         Flexible plan design, enrollment, and onboarding options

·         Broad set of benefits from which to choose

·         Fixed payments made directly to the member to spend as they choose

·         Best-in-class administration

·         A unique suite of caregiver and support service coverages in eligible states, such as wellness, dependent adult and child care, transportation, lodging, and more

Accident Indemnity

The EssentialCare Accident policy features up to 54 benefit types, including a Non-Professional Organized Sports benefit and Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) benefit built into the certificate. 24-hour and off-the-job coverage is available.

Critical Illness

The EssentialCare Critical Illness policy provides coverage for up to 35 of the most significant and frequent critical illnesses, plus eight childhood conditions. The product is a finalist for the Insurance Nexus “New Product of the Year Award”, thanks to its new-to-market, groundbreaking mental health rider available to provide coverage for severe mental illness.

“EssentialCare products are modular and adaptable to provide the most options for employer groups,” Drew said. “We have a robust set of benefits to fit employer needs and underlying plan designs – whether a group is looking for a base plan with HSA compatibility, or a benefit-rich design to support employee lifestyles, we can provide the coverage they need.”

All EssentialCare products are underwritten by BCS Insurance Company, and available exclusively through BCS brokers and the BCS Insurance Agency. To learn more about BCS Financial, visit bcsf.com.

About BCS Financial Corporation

BCS Financial Corporation has more than 70 years of experience delivering a wide range of insurance and financial solutions for Blue Cross and Blue Shield organizations nationwide. Through its subsidiaries, BCS Insurance Company and 4 Ever Life Insurance Company, BCS is licensed in all 50 states and is rated A- (Excellent) by A.M. Best. BCS Financial is headquartered in Oakbrook Terrace, Ill. Learn more at bcsf.com.

About EssentialCare Group Products

ESSENTIALCARE LIMITED BENEFIT, GROUP ACCIDENT, GROUP CRITICAL ILLNESS AND GROUP HOSPITAL INDEMNITY ARE LIMITED BENEFIT POLICIES – READ YOUR POLICY CAREFULLY. THESE POLICIES ARE NOT MAJOR MEDICAL INSURANCE AND ARE NOT INTENDED TO BE A SUBSTITUTE FOR MAJOR MEDICAL COVERAGE. BCS EssentialCare insurance products are underwritten by BCS Insurance Company, OH (Administrative Offices: Oakbrook Terrace, IL). See policy documents for a complete description of benefits, exclusions, limitations, and conditions of coverage. Features and availability by vary by location and are subject to change. In some states, EssentialCare products are pending regulatory approval.

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For more information, please contact Nathan Post at 630.472.7860.