Earning an A+ in Healthcare
How schools are making the grade in employee benefits

By Ray Tomlinson, President of Crowne Consulting Group

Healthcare expenses are ballooning nationwide, but forward-thinking school districts have taken matters into their own hands to push down costs.  Districts across Florida are finding value in providing primary-care services for employees at or near the worksite.  Employees visiting onsite health and wellness centers enjoy increased access to low-cost preventative care, which is helping employers to lower average healthcare costs.

Florida-based Crowne Consulting Group has become the state’s one-stop-shop for implementing and maintaining onsite care programs.  Crowne collaborates with the medical experts at Tennessee-based CareHere, LLC to operate nearly 30 on- or near-site health and wellness centers throughout Florida, including centers for several school districts.

In addition to physicians, the staff typically includes nurses, dieticians, exercise physiologists, and other medical staff.  Patients access a wide range of services, including x-rays and physicals, as well as comprehensive treatment for conditions like high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes.

Patients make their own appointments online or by phone for a 20-minute visit with a doctor. They can reserve additional time with the physician if needed, and they never have to pay a copay.  What’s more, patients can walk out of their appointment with a free generic prescription in hand.  This ease of use and cost-free care keeps utilization high.  Diverting a large portion of doctor visits to the controlled-cost centers keeps outside health claims cost significantly lower.

“Our costs for the health centers, including operations and administration, are approximately 30 to 70 percent less than what employers are paying under the fee-for-service model,” according to Ray Tomlinson, president of Crowne Consulting Group.

Crowne’s client Pasco County Schools offers four Employee Health & Wellness Centers for over 8,000 employees, retirees, and dependents.  Within the first year of opening its first center, the district reduced health costs 5 percent, saving over $2 Million.  The district was also able to flatten prescription drug expenses and reduce workers’ compensation costs by 50 percent.

In addition to Pasco County Schools, Crowne has helped Citrus County Schools, Lake County Schools, and St. Johns County Schools to save millions of dollars in healthcare costs, while enhancing care for employees.  Newcomers Levy County Schools, which opened earlier this year, and Indian River Schools, slated to open in September, are poised for similar results.

Remember that when considering the launch of any cost-saving healthcare solution, experience is most important.  Visit owd.dev/PCHP/CrowneGroup/wp and contact Crowne Consulting Group’s team at 407.654.5414 to learn about their years of expertise in serving school districts.

Growing Demand for Employee Health & Wellness Centers to Help Florida Employers Control Healthcare Costs

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Crowne Consulting Group and CareHere open more worksite health centers for employees of government agencies, school districts, and private organizations.

May 6, 2014 (Ocoee, Fla.)Crowne Consulting Group, Inc., an employee benefits consulting firm collaborating with CareHere, LLC to operate over 25 worksite health and wellness centers throughout Florida, have announced an increasing number of employee health and wellness centers.

The latest centers will service Lake County Sheriff’s Office as well as employees of LifeStream, which is a behavioral health and social services organization servicing children and adults in Lake and Sumter Counties.  There are approximately 1600 plan members covered under the Sheriff’s Office and LifeStream’s health plans, including employees and dependents.

At no charge to plan members (including dependents), the health and wellness center will offer primary care, occupational services, pharmacy, disease management, and wellness services such as nutritional coaching.  Plan members will also benefit from zero deductibles, no copays, and free health risk assessments with lab work for evaluation of cholesterol, blood sugar, liver function, blood pressure and other bio-metric panels.

“An increasing number of private employers and governments are launching employee health centers to lower health costs by improving care, enhancing disease management, and providing easier access to care,” said Ray Tomlinson, president of Crowne Consulting Group.

In addition to corporations and governments, school districts are becoming self-insured and offering worksite care to save money for both employees and their districts.  Levy County Schools opened an employee health center in February, and Indian River County Schools’ center is slated to be opening this summer.  For information about the growing number of employee health centers opening in Florida, visit: https://crowneinc.com/news/.

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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1/27/2014 news report by GTN News discusses the reason why Levy County Schools is opening an Employee Healthcare Center with the help of CareHere and Crowne Consulting Group. The Levy County School Board is looking to keep employee health care costs from climbing too much through the act of increasing employee wellness and enhancing affordable access to quality care.

Crowne Client Awarded Top 100
Healthiest Workplaces in America

Jan. 16, 2014 – Healthiest Employers, the leader in employee health best practices and benchmark data, has announced the induction of The District School Board of Pasco County into the 2014 Healthiest 100 Workplaces in America.  The District was named #35 on the Top 100 list, which honors the “best of the best” employers, those who blaze the path to a healthy workplace for their peers. Representing employers of all sizes, all regions and all industries, the District is among organizations that have comprehensively incorporated the most vital corporate wellness practices.  The District was recognized for moving beyond healthy living sound bites to the development of a practical, effective, and continuously improving framework for creating a sustainably healthy workplace.

Consulting Group collaborates with CareHere LLC in operating four onsite Health & Wellness Centers for Pasco schools’ employees, dependents, and retirees.  For zero deductibles and no costs, the District’s health-plan members have free access to primary medical, screenings, lab work, X-rays, EKG, occupational health, wellness programs, disease management, and generic prescriptions.  Watch a news report highlighting the District’s successes with onsite healthcare.

Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Pasco School District to Open 4th Health Center

Land O’Lakes, FL – (September 24, 2013) – The District School Board of Pasco County will hold a ribbon cutting and tours for its newest CareHere Health & Wellness Center at Hudson Middle School on Friday, September 27, at 10 a.m.

Superintendent Kurt Browning, School Board chairman Cynthia Armstrong, and School Board member Steve Luikart will be joined by Crowne Consulting Group/CareHere representatives and district Employee Benefits staff for the short program that will precede the ribbon cutting.  The Center will be open the rest of the day for staff and family members to tour.

Employees, retirees, and dependents covered by the District School Board of Pasco County’s group health plan (Florida Blue, formerly Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida) can receive medical services including treatment for primary care, lab work, medication, x-rays, and more at no out-of-pocket cost at any onsite CareHere Health Center.  Other centers are located near Gulf High School, Land O’ Lakes High School, and Centennial Middle School.

Crowne Consulting Group, an employee benefits consulting firm, is co-administrator of more than 25 health centers throughout Florida, helping Tennessee-based partners CareHere surpass a milestone of 100 centers nationwide.

District employees and retirees can schedule appointments at any of the District’s four CareHere Health & Wellness Centers by calling 1.877.423.1330, or logging on to www.CareHere.com.  The new CareHere Health & Wellness Center is located at 14730 Cobra Way, Hudson; however, Google Maps does not have that address in the proper location.  See the map below for the exact location, and if you plan to use GPS, use the middle school address, 14540 Cobra Way.

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Pasco Schools Media Contact: Linda Cobbe, Director Communications & Government Relations, (813)794-2717 / (727)774-2717 / (352)524-2717.

Visit Crowne’s “In the News” page for more information about Health and Wellness Centers across the state of Florida.  See Event Photos below.

UPDATE:

September 12, 2013 (Ocoee, Fla.) – Crowne Consulting Group is proud to announce that Pasco County School Board has been awarded the Healthiest Employers Award 2013 in the category for 1500+ employees.  Read the full article about Pasco’s successes in the Tampa Bay Business Journal.

ORIGINAL ANNOUNCEMENT

Crowne Consulting Group Client Nominated for Healthiest Employer Awards

August 19, 2013 (Ocoee, Fla.) – Crowne 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, is being recognized for outstanding achievements in their employee wellness successes.

The District has been named a finalist for the 2013 Healthiest Employer Awards, which is being presented by the Tampa Bay Business Journal.

The award honors organizations that have made a rewarding realization — a healthier workplace means happier employees who are more productive, use less sick time, and remain loyal longer.  The  finalists’ ranking order will be revealed at a Tampa Bay Business Journal luncheon at the Mainsail Suites Hotel & Conference Center on Sept. 12.

Crowne Consulting Group collaborates with CareHere LLC in operating three Health & Wellness Centers for Pasco schools’ employees, dependents, and retirees.  For zero deductibles and no costs, the District’s health-plan members have free access to primary medical, screenings, lab work, X-rays, EKG, occupational health, wellness programs, disease management, and generic prescriptions.

About Crowne Consulting Group: 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 a cumulative 100 years of 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.

For more information about launching an effective health and wellness center to improve the quality of healthcare for your Florida employees, call 407-654-5414.

Quality Makes the Difference:
Accessibility and Service Quality are Keys to Onsite Care

Health cost trends continue to skyrocket at a national rate due to chronic disease.  Failure to conduct health screenings and delaying to seek help for minor health issues can escalate to serious conditions resulting in expensive health claims.  When quality care is easily accessible, however, health costs can rapidly decrease.

Early detection, prompt treatment, and consistent follow-ups are key components of the onsite healthcare model.  By supplying onsite or nearby medical care for employees, employers are mitigating risks and cutting costs, all while increasing employee benefits.  In addition to a healthier bottom line, this translates to improved productivity and fewer sick days with less time away for physician appointments.

The Crowne Consulting Group and its partner, CareHere LLC, have created a cost-saving model for self-funded employers, extending benefits of free office visits, screenings, and increased physician face-time.  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 enhancing care.

1)     Will the employees have easy access to the health center?
In addition to building the center at the worksite or a nearby location, availability is essential.  The CareHere-Crowne model allows employees to simply call a toll-free number or go on-line to schedule an appointment.  Patients are typically in front of a doctor before the end of the workday.

2)     Will the employees be able to fill prescriptions via the health center?
Through CareHere, employers pay wholesale costs for prescription drugs, which have helped employers save millions of dollars.  Importantly, patients appreciate that they can conveniently walk away from the appointment with a free or low-priced prescription in about an hour.

3)     Will the range of services meet the employee’s medical needs?
Without having to leave the worksite, employees may seek treatment for acute conditions such as a cold or infection, in addition to chronic conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes.  The full list of services typically includes primary and family care, occupational services, workers’ compensation matters, x-rays, pharmacy, disease management, and wellness services.

4)     Will there be incentives for employees to utilize the center?
Visits to the health centers are voluntary, but incentives for employees to use them include zero co-pays and no deductibles.  CareHere and Crowne Consulting Group also take a client-centric approach to boost success.  Among the list of perks are a grand opening to announce and promote awareness for the new center, reward-based programs with prizes to increase utilization, and employee incentives tied to wellness programs and health risk assessments for identifying risks early and controlling costs.

When considering the launch of any healthcare service, experience is most important.  Crowne Consulting Group’s team has expertise in serving public sector employers such as school boards, city and county government, as well as private organizations.  Crowne’s team strategically collaborates with CareHere LLC to help employers hire medical staff and operate health centers.  CareHere operates more than 100 health centers nationwide, specializing in providing onsite healthcare through employers by making healthcare easier, better and more affordable.

Announcement

CROWNE CONSULTING GROUP PRESENTS AT THE ANNUAL CONFERENCE FOR FLORIDA
CITY & COUNTY MANAGERS ASSOCIATION

Government leaders gather for
education and information pertaining to onsite healthcare.
May 29, 2013 (Ocoee, Fla.) – Crowne Consulting Group, Inc., an employee benefits consulting firm specializing in onsite employee health and wellness centers in Florida, announces that its team presented a case study for the Florida City and County Management Association (FCCMA) annual conference last week at the Orlando Hilton.
. FCCMA is a professional organization of practicing public administrators from throughout Florida local governments.  The association focusses on providing education, support, information, and regulation to its members.
. The 2013 conference theme was “Loving Your Community – Building Attachment to Florida’s Cities, Towns and Counties.”  Crowne Consulting Group, which was a Diamond Sponsor for the event, offered a one-hour presentation with financial analysis and human resources planning for employers interested in the dynamics of onsite healthcare.
. Crowne’s session, titled “Onsite Health Centers: Real Results from a Five-Year Case Study,” outlined the successes of the onsite health center at the City of Ocoee.  Since implementing onsite care for its more than 740 employees, retirees and dependents in 2008, the City of Ocoee reversed its trend of rising healthcare expenditures and avoided over $4 million in costs.  Last year, an impressive 92 percent of eligible employees visited the center at least once.  Also, medical costs of its workers’ compensation program has decreased over 50 percent annually during a four-year span.
. “In addition to creating a healthier workforce, the onsite healthcare model is helping self-funded employers of all sizes to save millions of dollars,” said Ray Tomlinson, President of Crowne Consulting Group, who presented alongside Jim Carnicella, Crowne’s Client Account Manager and the former HR Director for the City of Ocoee.
. Crowne Consulting Group collaborates with Tennessee-based  CareHere LLC to operate more than 25 centers in Florida.  Nationally, CareHere operates over 120 centers.  Onsite health and wellness centers service employees, dependents and retirees.  Services typically include primary care, occupational services, pharmacy, disease management, and wellness services along with the benefits of zero copays, free screenings and increased physician face-time for employees.

For a copy of this case study or to learn more about the benefits of onsite healthcare, contact Ray Tomlinson at rtomlinson@crowneinc.com
.
View this release in PDF format: Crowne Announcement-FCCMA-5-29-2013.

 

Pasco school district clinics
bring big health care savings

By Jeffrey S. Solochek, Times Staff Writer
Newspaper Article
Tampa Bay Times
Jan. 26, 2013

 

Dade City — Lose weight.

Rita Mitchell had heard the words many times before.

But it wasn’t until the Cox Elementary School prekindergarten teacher got the advice during a health risk assessment at the Pasco County school district’s wellness center that she took the message to heart. Mitchell learned she was at risk for diabetes, and heard loud and clear what ignoring the signs could mean.

“It was enough to get my attention,” she said. “This thing, if left unattended, it can kill you. She told me to lose weight. I’ve been hearing that for years. But it was like, hello.”

Flash forward a year, and Mitchell is a new woman.

“I just turned 50, and I lost 50,” she said. “I am excited.”

Her success mirrors that of many other district employees, and of the health clinic program that the school district introduced two years ago.

The School Board approved spending about $1.5 million a year to operate three school-based clinics, offering free appointments and medications, in addition to preventive wellness programs for employees. The idea was that the district would save money in the long run by reducing insurance claims and related expenses.

Last year, the district saw its claims drop by more than $2 million, with per-employee costs down by nearly 5 percent. Its rates did not increase as much as expected, allowing the board to use savings to reduce the number of furlough days imposed on employees.

Its focus on diabetes care resulted in a 34 percent decrease in related claims, and the district saw a 26 percent increase in diabetes patients actually getting the monitoring tests they need. Its efforts on weight reduction, expected to net about 1,000 pounds among participants, totaled a loss of 3,800 pounds by those employees.

Use of the centers has been so strong, in fact, that the district is considering opening two others, as well as a center focused on occupational health and physical therapy. District benefits director Mary Tillman said they had to add staff to the centers over the summer to meet the growing demand.

With medical costs rising, Tillman said, the only real way to cut expenses is to get people healthy. Making visits convenient and affordable, while focusing on managing chronic illnesses and catching problems before they get out of hand, has allowed the district to make such strides.

“I’m very proud of our wellness centers,” said School Board chairwoman Cynthia Armstrong, who sits on the district health and wellness incentives committee. “I really feel like it’s been a win-win situation for the district and the employees.”

Armstrong said she and her husband both take advantage of the services the clinics offer, and can see firsthand the benefits. Other districts have started looking at Pasco as a model, she added, as they consider establishing their own wellness programs….See Tampa Bay Times for this full story.

To learn more about Crowne Consulting Group and CareHere’s onsite care, visit our Health & Wellness Centers Page

NEWS RELEASE

Click to View PDF with Photos
Or Scroll Down this Page to Watch an Event Slideshow

GOVERNMENT LEADERS ACROSS CENTRAL FLORIDA GATHER FOR CROWNE’S SUMMIT ON INNOVATIONS FOR ONSITE HEALTHCARE

Cities and school districts met with Crowne Consulting Group for a Summit on Jan. 15 to assess the growing number of employee health and wellness centers.

Jan. 23, 2013 (Ocoee, Fla.) – Central Florida has become a hub of innovation in employee healthcare.  Since 2008, onsite employee health and wellness centers have been popping up across Florida and pushing down employer healthcare costs.
Last Tuesday, government representatives met to discuss the benefits they’ve reaped from implementing onsite care centers.  They also formed strategies to enhance care by sharing healthcare center access with neighboring municipalities.

Attendees of the 1st Annual Crowne Summit included, the School District of Lake County, City of DeLand, City of Kissimmee, City of Leesburg, City of Lake Mary, City of Mount Dora, City of Ocala, City of Ocoee, City of Oviedo, and City of Sanford.  All entities are working with Crowne Consulting Group and CareHere to manage onsite employee health and wellness centers.

Crowne Consulting Group, Inc., an employee benefits consulting firm, is co-administrators of more than 25 health centers throughout Florida, helping Tennessee-based partners CareHere, LLC surpass a milestone of 100 centers nationwide.

Onsite health and wellness centers help employers cut health costs through onsite medical care and wellness programs.  Health center services typically include primary care, occupational services, pharmacy, disease management, x-rays, and wellness services along with the employee benefits of zero copays, free screenings, free generic prescriptions, and increased physician face-time.

All centers are staffed by a physician and other supporting medical staff.  In addition to providing primary care, chronic disease management and medication, the centers also focus on providing health risk assessments (HRAs), which is a short health examination with blood draw to assess a patient’s risk for diseases and conditions.

Mitigating risks early and keeping employees healthy have prompted positive financial results, including: 10 percent reductions in plan costs, 15 percent decreases in prescription costs, drastic reductions in sick time, and millions of taxpayer dollars saved.

“We’ve saved over $3M since opening our health center,” said Robert Frank, City Manager for Ocoee, which is approaching its five-year anniversary for onsite care for its 350 employees.

Jerry Boop, Finance Director for the City of Oviedo, spoke of similar results.  “Crowne has left their footprint on our organization.  The City’s healthcare costs are down significantly and are currently trending around 3 percent.  We all know that’s a huge accomplishment.”

And they’re not alone.  The City of Ocala’s team thanked Crowne for helping them to improve efficiency in a tough economy.  The center is one of “our crown jewels,” according to Catherine Cameron, Assistant City Manager.  The City saved enough money to go from fully-insured in 2009 to being self-insured within a year of opening its doors.

“Prior to opening the clinics, our premium increases were trending around 10 percent annually. Since we put in the clinics, we’ve been able to keep that down consistently to just 2 percent,” said Jared Sorensen, Director of Human Resources and Risk Management for Ocala.

“We also utilized CareHere’s wellness program last year and tied an incentive program to our premiums so that those completing HRAs and following up with doctor care benefited from lesser premiums.  This has provided great success in identifying risks and controlling costs.”

Mark Hayward, Human Resources Director for the City of DeLand, says they’ve seen a $145,000 drop in combined workers’ compensation and medical costs since opening in November of 2010.  DeLand also struck a deal with the local hospital to allow employees easier access to specialized medical care.

Collaboration was a running theme at the summit, as most entities remarked that they were open to discussing the idea of access sharing, which would allow their employees an opportunity to visit nearby CareHere health centers operating under neighboring counties and cities.

A partnership example is the City of Ocoee sharing with the City of Apopka to extend the convenience of easy access for employees living in different areas.  The Cities of Mount Dora and Leesburg also have an access-sharing agreement for their onsite health centers.

In addition to multi-entity sharing, some have gone the route of opening more than one location, such is the case with Lake Schools, which is in the process of opening their third onsite health center this year for its more than 5,000 employees, dependents, and retirees.

“The centers have been a great success and employees are asking for more locations.  Plus, we didn’t have to raise healthcare premiums on our employees this year,” said Carol MacLeod, Chief Financial Officer for Lake Schools, which began working with Crowne and CareHere in 2011.

Attendees of the summit took notes while listening to these exciting results.  The Cities of Lake Mary and Sanford, who just launched onsite centers within the past few months, hope for similar results, while the City of Kissimmee is counting the days until their first center opens in April.

“These employers deserve a round of applause for implementing solutions that actually lower health costs while enhancing employee care,” added Dan Ross, president of Med-Vision LLC and Med-View LLC, which provides healthcare data analytics and benefits consulting for Crowne.

Prior to posing for a team photo and pictures with smiling clients and vendors, Ray Tomlinson, president of Crowne Consulting Group gave the following statement:  “We are thrilled to hear so much positive feedback from clients who are decreasing healthcare costs and improving quality of care for their employees.  The fact that more centers are opening soon means that Florida is on the leading edge of employer-driven healthcare reform. Additionally, this idea of clients sharing access in neighboring areas could extend greater convenience for employees while increasing access to affordable care.”

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 a cumulative 100 years of experience in serving public sector employers such as school boards, city and county government, as well as private organizations.  The firm’s mission is to bring innovative solutions that meet the fiscal responsibility of employers and maximizes investments.  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.

Call 407-654-5414 to learn more about corporations, school districts, and government agencies implementing on-site health and wellness centers for their employees.

Click Play to Enjoy the Event Photos (Slideshow)