ECHIP is an employee health insurance collaborative serving 4 municipalities, 4 Boards of Education and a Regional Educational Service Center.

In 2010, Connecticut passed Public Act 10-174, allowing municipalities and boards of education to join together for the purpose of purchasing employee health insurance.  Leaders from municipalities and boards of education across northeastern Connecticut met with the ultimate goal of partnering to form the region’s first public-employee health insurance collaborative. Working with Cigna, ECHIP was officially launched on July 1, 2012. The collaborative enables its members to more effectively control and contain rising employee health insurance premiums. The collaborative’s objective is to maximize resources resulting in reduced costs for employee health benefits.

In its first year, ECHIP saved members, on average, up to 7% on annual employee health insurance premiums. ECHIP members realized savings by moving from being fully insured to being self-funded.   Self-funded plans prove more affordable because the premium based financial model is stripped away and replaced by fees for service.   The two primary fees are stop loss and network access.  Moving into the second year, ECHIP members experienced health insurance renewal rates that ranged from -2% to 19% for the 2013-14 fiscal year.  With medical trend hovering between 12 - 13% the majority of the ECHIP members received renewals that were under trend.  The health insurance renewal rates for fiscal year 2014-15 came in at -2% to 8%; lower than current medical trend.   ECHIP’s fourth year, 2016-17, renewal rates ranged from 0% - 12.4% with an overall group average of 6%. 

A credit to the renewal figures has in large part been placed on a joint health and wellness initiative ECHIP began during its first year.  ECHIP offers incentive based health and wellness opportunities along with conducting biometric screenings, employee health fairs, webinars, employee wellness interest surveys and onsite health and wellness seminars.  The data produced from the biometric screenings and employee wellness surveys now allows ECHIP to become more vigilant in offering programs specific to the needs of their employees and their dependents which in turn helps to lower medical costs.  This initiative was supported and promoted by each of the municipalities, boards of education and the regional education service center.

ECHIP is governed by a Board of Directors. Each ECHIP member has one voting Director on the board. The Board meets monthly. Bylaws provide a framework for operating the collaborative.

Yes. For details, contact ECHIP Administrator Larisa Carr at 860-455-1546, or via e-mail at lcarr@echipct.org.