NETA, Coca-Cola Bottlers partnering on insurance for pubcasting stations

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The National Educational Telecommunications Association today (Feb. 23) announced that it is offering group health insurance coverage plans to pubcasters, a project it has been working on for several years. So far, 70 licensees, both television and radio, representing nearly 2,900 individuals, are participating in the new initiative. NETA is partnering with the Coca-Cola Bottlers Association to provide the coverage, through that company’s Alliance of Professional Service Organizations (APSO) subsidiary. The partnership marks “the beginning of significant savings and improved insurance coverage opportunities for those who participate,” NETA President Skip Hinton said in the announcement. APSO currently serves nearly 300 employers, including the majority of the soft-drink bottlers and more than 200 others, representing nearly 25,000 individuals. The financial benefit to pubcasting stations and related organizations “will be immediate and substantial,” Hinton said. In addition to cost savings, participants gain access to comprehensive coverage; wellness and care management; information and consultation on health care reform, contribution strategies and coverage questions; streamlined administration of eligibility, billing, enrollment, and reduced stop loss premiums. Anita Sims, NETA v.p. for finance and business development, headed the initiative, along with NETA’s Business Center. “The captive is our largest initiative to date and one that will benefit many stations right now,” Sims said. “Looking ahead, I foresee exponential savings in a budget line that is a great concern to public broadcasters everywhere.”

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