Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE:

Governor Signs New Law Helping Schools Save Money
through Electronic Procurement Processes

Crowne Procurement Services applauds new law to improve purchasing for school districts.

March 10, 2016 (Ocoee, Fla.) – This week Florida’s governor has signed into law Senate Bill 350, which allows the use of online procurement tools for school districts and state colleges.

“Along with the citizens of Florida, I give a big thank you to Gov. Rick Scott for signing the bill to support electronic procurement,” said Neil McDonald, Director of Crowne Procurement Services and The Crowne Group’s affiliates focused on helping school districts cut costs and reduce risks.  “Also, congratulations to Sen. Bill Montford and Rep. Brad Drake for effectively and efficiently shepherding SB 350 through the legislative process.”

The measure reforms the statewide process for electronic procurement for school districts and promotes access to competitively priced, high-quality goods.  Each year parents and teachers look for ways to ensure their dollars are spent wisely.  SB 350 authorizes school boards to use an electronic procurement process similar to common online procurement tools like eBay.

“SB 350 ensures schools receive the most competitive prices and can therefore spend more money in the classrooms,” said Sen. Montford.  “When it comes to taxpayer dollars and student education we need to give school districts the most effective tools, and this bill adds another tool to the tool box.”

The legislature places performance metrics on school districts to show they are getting their goods at the lowest price while not sacrificing on quality.

“We see this as a step forward in making sure that taxpayer dollars are spent wisely and ensuring Florida’s teachers also have the best tools available,” said Rep. Drake.  “The online procurement tool has handy reporting tools with minimum time required, allowing the schools to focus on providing the best teaching environment for our children.”

About Crowne Procurement Services: Crowne Procurement Services is part of The Crowne Group, a diversified consulting firm offering employer solutions and serving school districts, cities, counties, government entities, and private companies. Crowne Procurement Services prides itself on having decades of procurement and supplier-side experience along with an extensive knowledge of procurement requirements and processes. In partnership with EASi, Electronic Auction Services, Inc., Crowne’s experts are making the most of a proprietary technology platform to help organizations procure everything from A-to-Z while helping to save money.

For more information, contact: Neil McDonald, (321) 221-0674, ndmcdonald@crowneinc.com

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How Schools are Saving Money and Lives
Preventive Care Simultaneously Helps Patients and Employers

Doctor and Employee, Onsite ClinicToday’s healthcare system provides an array of screenings for detecting everything from cancer to cholesterol issues. Screenings have become an essential component of preventive healthcare. Detecting health issues early can be the key to avoiding costly and complicated illnesses in the future.

In step with the movement towards consumer education, well-informed employer groups and school districts are launching onsite and near-site health and wellness centers to incentivize employees, dependents, and retirees to keep up-to-date on disease management and preventive health screenings.
Employers are discovering these value-added benefits of the onsite and near-site health model:

  • As a first line of defense, the onsite-care model ensures health screenings are free, easy, and conveniently accessible.
  • Unlike outdated wellness programs that are triggered by large claims or passive educational material, the onsite-care model includes an active approach based on extensive lab work and Health Risk Assessments (HRA).
  • The medical team can offer recommendations for when a patient should be tested and can provide customized care to meet each individual’s unique needs.
  • Physicians can proactively bring medical concerns to the attention of patients as well as create a potentially life-saving plan-of-action for patients to avoid future health problems.

A national Health and Productivity Survey from 2015 indicated that HRA and biometric screenings remain popular components of worksite wellness programs, with 57% of 700 surveyed employer organizations offering an HRA. Through easy accessibility, onsite and near-site health centers offer a solution for increasing utilization of HRAs.

Florida-based Crowne Consulting Group and its affiliates are helping dozens of employer organizations to operate onsite healthcare centers, in which high percentages of members utilize HRAs and screening programs, helping clients prevent high-dollar claims for chronic diseases including diabetes and congestive heart failure. Pasco schools’ first-year results included a 34 percent decrease in diabetes claims costs.

Increased screenings, HRAs, and easy access to preventative care are helping employers achieve millions of dollars in financial savings for taxpayers and reallocating those dollars for other school resources. Additionally, by shifting from disease management to disease prevention, health centers are providing a positive impact on members’ health and their wallets.

Contact Crowne Consulting Group for more information about onsite care.

ANNOUNCEMENT

Florida Tobacco Cessation Alliance Awards Pasco Schools with Worksite Wellness Silver Award

Pasco-FTCA-Award1Crowne Consulting Group, an employee benefits consulting firm specializing in onsite health and wellness centers, is proud to announce that our client, The District School Board of Pasco County, has been awarded the Worksite Wellness Silver Award from the Florida Tobacco Cessation Alliance (FTCA) for comprehensive cessation benefits for employees.

Crowne Consulting Group collaborates with CareHere LLC in operating five Employee Health & Wellness Centers for Pasco schools’ employees, dependents, and retirees.  Below are excerpts from a recent Press Release issued on October 6, 2015, by FTCA:

[The Florida Tobacco Cessation Alliance (FTCA) will present a Silver Level Award to Pasco County Schools for their commitment and dedication to their employees’ health and wellness. The school system has an aggressive plan in place to help their employees quit using tobacco products.

“Employee wellness is one of the district’s measured goals, and our comprehensive tobacco cessation program and no-cost, FDA-approved tobacco cessation medications are factors that will help us achieve that goal,” said Kurt Browning, superintendent of, Pasco County Schools.

The Florida Department of Health in Pasco County and The American Lung Association in Florida, both Alliance members, have been working with the school system to get their paperwork in order to be eligible for the award. “We are extremely proud of Pasco County Schools for recognizing the role tobacco use plays in not only overall health but productivity and absenteeism, and the steps they have taken to ensure employees have access to proven-successful services and pharmacotherapy to assist with their cessation efforts” says Kurt Goerke with the Florida Tobacco Cessation Alliance. ]

Visit www.FTCAlliance.com for more information about FTCA.  Contact Crowne Consulting Group for employee benefits, wellness, and onsite healthcare solutions for your employees.  Crowne’s team looks forward to telling you about the unique solutions that have helped Pasco Schools achieve wellness successes.

Employers are Self-Funding to Find Savings in Healthcare

Crowne Consulting Group launches affiliate corporation, Medical Risk Solutions,
to help employers transition to self-funded and to launch worksite health centers.

Sept. 23, 2015 (Ocoee, Fla.) – Various provisions of the Affordable Care Act have swayed employers to opt for self-funding in order to achieve the greatest return from their healthcare investments.

In response to the growing demand for risk management coupled with self-funded plans, the benefits experts at Crowne Consulting Group have launched an affiliate onsite healthcare company, Medical Risk Solutions (www.medicalrisksolutions.com).

Medical Risk Solutions specializes in helping employers to strategically transition from fully insured to self-funded or partially self-funded through its Guaranteed Program with a rate-cap for at least three years.

“Our clients leverage the power of partnerships with one of the nation’s largest stop-loss carriers, providing reinsurance with a guaranteed rate cap,” said Ray Tomlinson, president of both Crowne Consulting Group and Medical Risk Solutions.  “Also, in conjunction with trusted medical partnerships, we remain positioned to help employers implement employee health and wellness centers for reducing the cost of healthcare claims under the more expensive fee-for-service model.”

As a positive, self-insured plans are exempt from medical-loss-ratio requirements and aren’t subject to risk-adjustment.  Onsite healthcare for employees attracts self-funded groups because visits are paid directly by the employer.  No claim is filed.  Group health insurance typically is conducted in a fee-for-services model.  The more physician services, the higher the bill.  With an onsite center, however, the employer controls spending by paying a flat fee and costs without mark-up.

Florida-based Crowne Consulting Group has helped self-funded employers in Florida ranging from 200 to over 8,000 employees to launch onsite healthcare.  Employers have saved millions of dollars in healthcare costs, decreased prescription drug costs, and lowered operational expenditures.

About Crowne Consulting Group, Inc: Crowne Consulting Group, Inc., founded in 1986, consults and provides administrative oversight services for onsite health and wellness centers to employers and is a related company with The Crowne Group, an employee benefits consulting firm specializing in employer solutions and personal lines of insurance.  Crowne’s experts have experience in serving public sector employers such as school boards, city and county government, sheriff offices, as well as private organizations.  Solutions for consumer-driven plans include health reimbursement arrangements, self-funded plans, onsite health and wellness centers, as well as risk management and human resources consulting.

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Accessibility Churns Success

Employers are making healthcare more effective by offering medical services at or nearby the worksite. By handling all administration and operations, onsite care experts can help shift attention from disease management to disease prevention.  Over 30 employee health and wellness centers in Florida are drastically reducing health costs through the help of Crowne Consulting Group, Inc. and medical partnerships.

Onsite care extends benefits of free office visits, screenings, and increased physician face-time for employees.  Employers can stick with their current healthcare plan and benefits provider.  The only difference is that the employees now have the option to handle medical appointments and wellness visits at the worksite rather than at more costly outside providers.

“Costs for operating an onsite health center can be 60 percent less than paying for a fee-for-service model,” said Ray Tomlinson, president of Crowne Consulting Group. “And it’s not just employers seeing the savings – the employees are also reaping the benefits through the increased accessibility to care.”

Utilization proves to be high because employee health centers offer on-demand medical service for employees, their dependents, and the retiree population for no out-of-pocket costs.

  • With a free and reliable health center nearby, employees are more likely to keep chronic issues, such as hypertension and diabetes, in check.
  • Workers are equipped to take better care of themselves, while also taking less time off and requiring fewer serious medical procedures.
  • Quality healthcare in a convenient location reduces costs to employees, and, by extension, taxpayers.

Employers can experience additional savings and services when the workers’ compensation program is integrated with an onsite-health-center model.  One Florida school district slashed their Worker’s Compensation costs by 50 percent in one year.  Crowne and their medical partners have also teamed with top-rated firms to bring insurance products and management services for fully-insured and self-insured school districts.

When considering onsite care, it’s important to ask the right questions to ensure your operators are able to meet and exceed your needs for lowering health costs while making quality care more accessible to your employees.  With expertise in serving public sector employers such as school boards, city and county government, as well as private organizations – Crowne specializes in making healthcare more accessible and more affordable.

Contact Crowne’s Expert Now.

Crowne Consulting Group was recently featured in American City & County Magazine for its expertise for serving governments and municipalities.  See the excerpt below and visit the magazine link to read this entire article.

Bankrolling benefits

Local governments’ varied responses to the Affordable Care Act
http://americancityandcounty.com/health-reform/bankrolling-benefits

By Derek Prall, American City and County Magazine, Feb. 2015

Excerpt:Onsite Care “…Regardless of the number of employees affected, the ACA has created numerous challenges for Human Resources departments – especially those with constrained budgets. Ray Tomlinson, president of Crowne Consulting Group, an organization helping business and governments set up health clinics, says in this way, local governments are no different than their private sector counterparts. “[Because of the ACA,] employers are experiencing additional oversight, restrictions and costs,” he says. From a local government standpoint, there is now less management discretion at designing benefits packages that would help keep costs low, Tomlinson says.

However, municipalities are increasingly looking to an outside-the-box solution, Tomlinson says, opening onsite or near-site health clinics. These facilities cut down on costs by lowering the number of claims made by covered employees and thus lowering expenses across the board.

“The Affordable Care Act has actually created – even if unintentionally – an opportunity for employers to take a look at the onsite or near-site clinic or heath center as an option to run alongside of their health plan,” says Tomlinson.

Several municipalities have opened health clinics in the past few years, including ….”

Read this full article at: http://americancityandcounty.com/health-reform/bankrolling-benefits.  Contact Crowne Consulting Group at 407-654-5414 for more information about onsite health and wellness centers.

Onsite Care Offers Win-Win Solution

In the wake of healthcare reform, Florida employers are increasingly turning to onsite care for reducing costs, promoting productivity, and enhancing employee-health satisfaction.

According to a survey of 255 employers by the National Association of Worksite Health Centers and PwC US, 64 percent of employers surveyed are achieving financial objectives for their onsite clinics.  A whopping 70 percent are also realizing reduced time lost by employees leaving work to see outside medical providers.

Employees, retirees, and dependents visiting onsite health and wellness centers enjoy free and convenient access to primary medical, screenings, lab work, X-rays, EKG, occupational health, wellness programs, generic prescriptions, as well as comprehensive treatment for conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure.

Florida-based Crowne Consulting Group has become the state’s premier source for implementing and managing worksite health and wellness centers.  Crowne collaborates with Tennessee-based CareHere, LLC to operate over 30 on- or near-site health and wellness centers throughout Florida, including several for school districts, private companies, cities, and counties.

“Employers across Florida are discovering a win-win situation when providing primary-care services for employees at or near the worksite,” said Ray Tomlinson, president of Crowne Consulting Group.

Onsite care, coupled with healthcare data-analytics and strategic planning, resulted in approximately $14 Million in savings over the past three years for Crowne’s client Pasco County Schools, which offers five Employee Health & Wellness Centers for 10,000 employees, retirees, and dependents.  The district’s achievements were highlighted in the December 2014 issue of DISTRICT ADMINISTRATION MAGAZINE and have earned the district several local, state, and national awards, including the 2015 Platinum Fit-Friendly Worksite Award from the American Heart Association for demonstrating a strong commitment to providing a healthy workplace.

“The ease of use and cost-free care keeps utilization high for employees, while diverting a large portion of doctor visits to the controlled-cost centers keeps outside health claims cost significantly lower for employers,” added Tomlinson.

Contact Crowne Consulting Group at 407-654-5414 for more information.

Pasco County Schools’ Employee Health
Initiatives Earn Recognition
from
American Heart Association

Florida school district is among elite group of Platinum Fit-Friendly Worksites.

View PDF: Pasco-Crowne-Press Release-1-23-2015

Land O’ Lakes, FL – (January 23, 2015) – As the nation recognizes American Heart Month this February, the District School Board of Pasco County is celebrating news that it earned the Platinum Fit-Friendly Worksite Award from the American Heart Association for demonstrating a strong commitment to providing a healthy workplace.

“Physical activity and employee wellness are important priorities for us at the district, so we are honored and excited to be recognized by the American Heart Association,” said Superintendent Kurt Browning.

The Fit-Friendly Worksites program is a catalyst for positive change in making employees’ health and wellness a priority.  Qualifications for the platinum-level include:

• Offering employees physical activity options in the workplace.

• Increasing healthy eating options at the worksite.

• Promoting a wellness culture in the workplace.

• Implementing at least nine criteria outlined by the American Heart Association in the areas of physical activity, nutrition and culture.

• Demonstrating measurable outcomes related to workplace wellness.

“We’re committed to providing the best workplace environment possible. This will benefit our employees’ health and produce even more positive results for our worksite overall,” said School Board Member Cynthia Armstrong, who represents the board on the district’s Employee Wellness Committee.

Pasco County schools also took an innovative approach to cut costs while enhancing healthcare for its more than 10,000 members by offering onsite care for employees, retirees and dependents.

“Employees, retirees and dependents visiting the onsite health and wellness centers enjoy free and convenient access to primary medical, screenings, lab work, X-rays, EKG, occupational health, wellness programs, disease management, and generic prescriptions,” said Ray Tomlinson, president of Crowne Consulting Group, which collaborates with CareHere Crowne LLC to operate more than 30 health and wellness centers throughout Florida, including five centers for Pasco County schools.

Ocoee-based Crowne Consulting Group’s management of the district’s CareHere health centers, in combination with Tampa-based Med-Vision’s health-data analytics for wellness planning, have proved valuable in helping the district’s wellness committee create results-driven programs.  For example, the district’s incentive program rewards employees who complete a health-risk assessment, follow-up with a health coach, and complete a questionnaire.  If an employee completes these three sections, he or she is awarded $150.  Employees can earn up to $100 in additional incentive awards for completing a program on CareHere Connect, an online wellness portal, or attending three out of four onsite-wellness sessions.

These incentives resulted in approximately $14 Million in savings over the past three years.  These achievements were highlighted in the December 2014 issue of District Administration Magazine, and have earned the district several local, state, and national awards in addition to the current honor from the American Heart Association.

About The District School Board of Pasco County: Pasco County Schools is the 11th largest school district in Florida and the 50th largest in the nation, with more than 69,000 students and nearly 11,000 employees.  The district includes 45 elementary schools, 16 middle schools, 13 high schools, four centers, nine charter schools, and a robust eschool.  Pasco is led by an elected superintendent and five elected school board members, who administer a $1.2 billion annual budget.  More than 93 percent of the general fund resources are committed to teaching and other school-level programs such as transportation, counseling, psychological services, school administration, and operations & maintenance.

About Crowne Consulting Group, Inc: Crowne Consulting Group, Inc., founded in 1986, consults and provides administrative oversight services for onsite health and wellness centers to employers and is a related company with The Crowne Group, an employee benefits consulting firm, specializing in employer solutions and personal lines of insurance.  Crowne’s experts have experience in serving public sector employers such as school boards, city and county government, as well as private organizations.  Solutions for consumer-driven plans include health reimbursement arrangements, self-funded plans, onsite health and wellness centers, as well as risk management and human resources consulting.

About the American Heart Association: The American Heart Association is devoted to building healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke. Our mission drives everything we do. To improve the lives of all Americans, we provide public health education in a variety of ways. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke.

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Schools Clearing Health Care Hurdles

District Administration Magazine
December 2014

Feature Story, Posted 11/14/2014
By Alison DeNisco

Crowne Consulting Group and our client, Pasco County Schools, are featured in the December 2014 Issue of District Administration Magazine.  Here’s an excerpt:

Pasco County Schools in Florida, a district of 10,000 employees, has been self-insured with Blue Cross Blue Shield since 2009. The district was fully insured for many years, but insurance carriers were increasing rates between 9 and 12 percent, says Kevin Shibley, executive director for administration at the District School Board of Pasco County.

Administrators determined that they could save those extra costs if they took on the risk of self-insuring, he says. “We have a long history of being stable, so we made the decision to go self-insured,” Shibley adds.

Since then, the district has not had an annual increase to its insurance plan exceeding 5 percent, Shibley says. It also worked with Crowne Consulting Group to open on-site employee health care centers, and saved $14 million over three years as a result.

Visit District Administration to read the full article:
http://www.districtadministration.com/article/schools-clearing-health-care-hurdles

PRESS RELEASE

Disease Management Successes Through Onsite Care
Helps Florida Employers Lower Healthcare Costs

Crowne Consulting Group and CareHere help employers reduce healthcare costs
through onsite health and wellness centers for employees.

Nov. 6, 2014 (Ocoee, Fla.) – Employers are faced with escalating healthcare costs, including the rising rates of costly chronic diseases affecting their workforce.  The American Diabetes Association, which is now honoring Diabetes Awareness Month, estimates the total national cost of diagnosed diabetes in the United States is $245 billion.

“Rising costs ring the alarm for bringing worksite care to employees; it’s crucial to make visiting the doctor more convenient for employees,” said Ray Tomlinson, president of Crowne Consulting Group, an employee benefits consulting firm.  “Our client’s employees say that easier access and personalized attention has helped them gain control over diabetes and other conditions.”

Crowne Consulting Group, Inc. (owd.dev/PCHP/CrowneGroup/wp) operates over 30 Florida-based employee health centers in collaboration with Tennessee-based CareHere, LLC, which operates over 100 nationwide.  At no cost to the employee, onsite health centers provide an array of medical clinic services including primary care, screenings, lab work, x-rays, occupational health, wellness programs, disease management, and free generic prescriptions.

According to a 2014 study by the RAND Corporation, a disease management component reduced healthcare costs by an estimated $136 per member per month, driven by a 29 percent reduction in hospital admissions.  The study concluded that workplace wellness programs may reduce health risks and costs for employees with manifest chronic disease.

“Employees utilize free screenings and wellness programs offered at onsite health centers, thus, preventing high-dollar claims by mitigating risks associated with chronic diseases,” said Tomlinson.

In addition to medical successes, Crowne’s clients have achieved 30 to 70 percent decreases in their healthcare claims, including clients seeing a 34 percent reduction in diabetes claims costs.

About Crowne Consulting Group, Inc: Crowne Consulting Group, Inc., founded in 1986, consults and provides administrative oversight services for onsite health and wellness centers to employers and is a related company with The Crowne Group, an employee benefits consulting firm, specializing in employer solutions and personal lines of insurance.  Crowne’s experts have experience in serving public sector employers such as school boards, city and county government, as well as private organizations.  Solutions for consumer-driven plans include health reimbursement arrangements, self-funded plans, onsite health and wellness centers, as well as risk management and human resources consulting.

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Crowne Press Release-PDF-11-6-2014