RALEIGH – Republican State Treasurer Dale Folwell, more than any other agency head through out state government (by far), announces taxpayer savings. Savings that stem from fiscally conservative reforms that are only implemented due to the strong and purposeful leadership provided by Folwell.
These aren’t small savings either. They almost always register in the millions of dollars.
Folwell’s latest announcement is no different – strategic procedural changes have resulted in $35 million in savings for the State Health Plan.
“State Treasurer Dale R. Folwell, CPA, announced today that the State Health Plan (SHP) will generate $35 million in savings as a result of the increase in members enrolled in the UnitedHealthcare (UHC) Medicare Advantage plans. Treasurer Folwell released the numbers during his monthly “Ask Me Anything” conference call, part of his initiative to promote transparency.
In an effort to improve member satisfaction and generate additional savings, the State Health Plan automatically enrolled its Medicare-eligible members in a premium-free Medicare Advantage Base Plan during open enrollment in October 2017.
Approximately 86 percent of Medicare-eligible members remained enrolled in a UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage Base Plan for the 2018 benefit year.
“The move to UHC’s Medicare Advantage products are a win-win for members and taxpayers,” said Folwell. “Members love the simplicity and value offered by the UHC plans. They have one plan and one card for both medical and drug coverage as well as access to great programs like SilverSneakers, while providing substantial savings for taxpayers.””
This wasn’t a forced move for the enrollees either. During open-enrollment, they were given the choice to opt out if they preferred another health plan. This adds to the long list of cost-saving measures Folwell has implemented that now total hundreds of millions in savings for taxpayers.
To put this in perspective, imagine if twice a month the General Assembly announced they shaved $5 million off of expected spending obligations and would return the money to state coffers to absorb another round of tax cuts. That’s happening at the Office of State Treasurer, even more important because it oversees some of the biggest fiscal ticking time bombs in government.