Industry News | May 23, 2010

NRA and UnitedHealthcare Create Health Care Alliance

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The National Restaurant Association and UnitedHealthcare are launching the Restaurant Health Care Alliance, offering a suite of products that will help nearly 13 million restaurant employees gain easier access to health care coverage and related products and services. Today, 4-6 million of the nation’s nearly 13 million foodservice industry employees are uninsured at any given time.

The Restaurant Health Care Alliance, which has been in development for nearly two years, will provide restaurant owners and employees easy access to cost-effective health benefit options that meet the health care needs of this diverse industry. In addition, it will help restaurant owners and employees understand their health care coverage options as well as tax and eligibility changes that are occurring in 2010 and beyond.

The Restaurant Health Care Alliance launches today and will be available initially to state restaurant associations in Colorado and Pennsylvania, as well as insurance agents and advisers representing restaurant clients in those states. The Alliance is expected to expand to additional states throughout 2010. The resources and tools developed by the Alliance will be available online at www.restauranthealthcare.org.

“As the nation’s second-largest private-sector employer, the restaurant industry is dedicated to finding affordable health care solutions for our workers,” says Dawn Sweeney, National Restaurant Association president and CEO. “We are committed to reducing costs in the health care system and expanding health care coverage for our work force. UnitedHealthcare’s vast experience and diverse capabilities make them the right partner in developing the Restaurant Health Care Alliance. Our members will benefit by providing them easier access to affordable health care coverage for their employees and dependents and allow for future opportunities to provide added benefits.”

“We are excited about this unique opportunity to partner with the National Restaurant Association to tailor health care information and products that best meet the needs of restaurant owners and employees,” says Gail Boudreaux, president of UnitedHealthcare.

Qualified small-business member restaurants will be introduced to innovative health plan options offered by UnitedHealthcare that offer significant annual premium savings compared to traditional health plans. In some markets, UnitedHealthcare CatalystSM is one of the options available and combines comprehensive catastrophic plan coverage with an up-front benefit allowance for certain preventive-care services.

Individual employees who do not have employer-sponsored coverage can choose from a wide range of UnitedHealthcare’s cost-effective individual and family plans, some of which start at less than $100 per month. Other products, including dental plans and discount health cards, will also be available.