Insurance: A Love/Hate Relationship

Insurance. We all love it and we all hate it. It’s a necessary evil that is a pain to deal with until it saves the day at the doctor’s offices. At times, it may feel like you have very few choices but GTN has found a unique way to expand its employees options. These days, the benefits a company offers could be a selling point to get the best people for your company. 

Every family and household is unique so finding a plan that optimizes flexibility is the best way to make the benefits you offer a key part of your hiring operation. 


What makes it different 

At GTN, we offer our employees insurance through a Self-insured medical plan. You may be thinking that this is just a glorified way of saying we offer no insurance benefits, and our employees are on their own. Quite on the contrary, in fact, self-insured medical plans are a way for companies to provide flexible coverage to its employees. GTN utilizes the Cigna PPO, or Preferred Provider Organization and a third party administrator helps facilitate the insurance proceedings with Cigna. 


We are part owner of a captive Insurance company, which allows us to help our employees find the best care for the most cost effective price, without all the red tape that traditional insurance companies put into place. 


Why it works

GTN was looking for ways to make insurance more flexible for each of our employees. We understood that each individual and family has unique needs and by including this in our incentive packages we are more competitive in hiring.  



Something that is a hassle for everyone in insurance is communicating a common knowledge of which doctors are in network. While there is a group of in-network providers, our employees are allowed to see who ever they want. Providers not within the Cigna PPO network won’t be covered the same and may include additional costs to the patient.  But this flexibility is something that we as a company and as individuals value.


While it may take some time to get things sorted out with the office, Co-pays are often lower than most. In one example from one of our employees, an x-ray and doctors visit went from $284 to $58 dollars. That’s an impressive savings that proves how your own employees may benefit from this. Because this plan is not as conventional as other insurances, it may take a little more work on the patients end to ensure the coverage is used to its fullest potential. In the example used earlier, the doctor’s office had to call BPA in order to work out the Proper co-pay. If this little bit of extra work, doesn’t scare your employees or office administrator the savings and flexibility will be worth it. 


Pros Cons
Provides coverage flexibility Premiums/Coverage 
Co-Pays are lower Some Doctors offices are confused by the third party administration
No deductibles for specific services Not all services, such as acupuncture or weight loss programs, are covered
Prescriptions are covered The patient is responsible for covering the difference if brand name prescriptions is prefered
You don’t need a referral to see a specialist The service may not be covered


Your Options

Above is a list of some things your office should consider before making a switch. Of course it’s not comprehensive, but if it seems intriguing, you should give self-insured plans a closer look. As part of the Cigna family, the items above are only examples of what your company could benefit from they are not universal offerings. 


Why It Matters

With all that being said, it is important to remember the benefits you offer can be an important component of attracting and retaining top talent. When your compensation packages make the employees feel truly valued, it is easier to keep them away from poaching competitors