Regents to vote tomorrow on third-party administrator change

Mai Hoang

The Board of Regents will vote tomorrow on whether to authorize Western’s switch to a new third-party administrator for the university’s self-insurance plan.

Western’s Benefits Committee decided this month to switch from Medical Benefits Administrators, Inc. to Anthem, Blue Cross and Blue Shield, which will offer a wider national network.

President Gary Ransdell said contract negotiations are still in progress, but the board must authorize the switch tomorrow for negotiations to continue.

He said the board is aware of the changes, and he expects members to grant approval.

“I presume that they would provide that authorization,” Ransdell said.

Faculty Regent Robert Dietle said he doesn’t see any reason why he would not support a switch in third-party administrators.

He said he has looked at reports and attended meetings of the benefits committee. He’s comfortable with the change to Anthem.

“It allows for some competition between providers of medical service,” Dietle said. “The health benefits that will be provided to faculty and staff are good.”

Regent chair Lois Gray said she has read information about Anthem and said the change will work out well for those who are insured.

Gray would not speculate on whether the board would give authorization to continue negotiations.

The board will also vote on a recommendation tomorrow regarding Ransdell’s contract. The recommendation was unavailable yesterday because it is still being prepared by a group of regents.

Reach Mai Hoang at [email protected]