Great-West Life now offers an industry-first suite of eClaims services for group insurance customers and plan members

WINNIPEG, March 23, 2011 – Great-West Life has enhanced its customer service capabilities with an industry-first suite of electronic claims services for group insurance customers and plan members. These eClaims services give Great-West Life plan members options to submit their claims – directly through their provider, online, with a card or on paper – which are unmatched in the Canadian industry.

Great-West Life’s suite of eClaims services includes:

  • Provider eClaims, which enables plan members to submit their claims electronically through select healthcare providers, beginning with chiropractors, physiotherapists and visioncare providers across Canada;
  • Member eClaims, which, in addition to allowing plan members to print personalized claim forms and check their claims history, now also allows them to submit healthcare claims online; and
  • Health SolutionsPlus, a revolutionary new approach to healthcare spending accounts (HCSAs) and benefit plan design, delivered through a Visa(R) payment card.

“Great-West Life’s eClaims services are unique in Canada, providing our group insurance customers and plan members with an unprecedented level of convenience, service, benefit plan design customization and technology,” says Dave Johnston, Executive Vice-President, Group Insurance at Great-West Life. “Plan members are reimbursed more quickly, minimizing out-of-pocket expenses – a cornerstone of our service delivery platform,” he says. “For plan sponsors, Great-West Life’s eClaims services can enhance a competitive offering to help attract and retain employees, while offering strong plan management capabilities and cost and fraud control.”

The uptake for eClaims to date has been significant, Johnston adds. “More than 5,000 providers have already registered for Provider eClaims and the numbers are growing weekly. In addition, we are receiving over 120,000 claims per month through the Member eClaims service. In time, we expect Provider eClaims volumes to become the primary source of electronic claims over Member eClaims as direct submission at point of service offers even greater convenience for plan members.”

The innovative consumer-driven healthcare benefit plan design option available through the Health SolutionsPlus Visa payment card also brings new product options for cost containment. Additionally, Great-West Life’s eClaims services also help reduce its environmental footprint by allowing plan members to reduce the number of paper claims they submit.

About Great-West Life eClaims services

Health SolutionsPlus is an innovative approach to healthcare spending accounts and benefit plan design, delivered through a Visa payment card. Health SolutionsPlus gives plan sponsors two options through which to deliver HCSAs, in addition to their plan’s insured benefits.

When plan sponsors choose Health SolutionsPlus, their plan members get Visa payment cards loaded with the group plan member’s HCSA balance. This allows members to conveniently pay for covered health-related products and services from providers authorized by Great-West Life, using the provider’s existing payment processing equipment.

Under the first Health SolutionsPlus option, plan sponsors can offer a traditional HCSA plan to allow plan members to use their cards to pay for, or top up, coverage for expenses not covered by their insured benefits plan. For example, plan members can use the Health SolutionsPlus card to pay for a physiotherapy service right at the clinic, or pay for the portion of a dental or drug claim that isn’t covered by their plan.

The second HCSA option gives plan members a new level of choice and flexibility with a unique consumer-driven healthcare plan. Consumer-driven healthcare allows plan sponsors to set up separate “accounts” for various types of coverage (in addition to their standard insured benefits) – for example, dentalcare, visioncare and paramedical services – from which plan members can access available funds to pay for covered services throughout the year. This is a new cost containment plan design option delivered through the card technology.

The Visa payment card for healthcare spending accounts, issued by Peoples Trust, is a first for group benefit plans in Canada. It is powered through the benefit card technology of Evolution Benefits Inc.

Provider eClaims is the first eClaims submission service for extended healthcare providers across Canada. With Provider eClaims, plan members can have their claims submitted right at the point of sale for instant claims adjudication, and plan sponsors can add value to their benefits program without incurring extra administrative costs. Provider eClaims is now available at thousands of providers across Canada, and provider sign-up continues to grow by over a hundred new providers each week. Great-West Life is the first insurer in Canada to offer this service at a national level, together with TELUS Health Solutions, which is accountable for provider adoption activities across Canada, the upkeep of a central registry and the provision of secure electronic claims capture systems, designed for the needs of providers.

Member eClaims is the newest feature of GroupNet(TM) for Plan Members, Great-West Life’s secure online services website. Member eClaims provides plan members with a faster, convenient alternative to paper claims when using a provider that doesn’t offer Great-West’s Provider eClaims. Members can submit online claims for a variety of covered healthcare services including visioncare, prescription drugs, dental (including major dental) and all paramedical services, depending on the plan member’s group benefits plan design.

About Great-West Life

Founded in Winnipeg in 1891, Great-West Life has long been a leader in the group benefits marketplace. The company has established this position over many decades, through its commitment to quality customer services and through a comprehensive selection of cost-effective benefits plans. Great-West Life offers effective benefit solutions for large and small employee groups of any size. The company serves the needs of more than 32,000 plan sponsors and their plan members and handles approximately 50 million group health and dental claims transactions for its plan members and their dependents each year.