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North Carolina Bank Employees Enjoy One Month "Holiday" from Paying Healthcare Insurance Premiums

North Carolina Banker’s Association Health Benefit Trust Enjoys Second Year in a Row of Below Trend Increases; CareGuide’s One Care Street Predictive Modeling System Helps Produce Budget Surplus

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--CareGuide, Inc. (OTCBB:CGDE), a total population health management company, today announced that its One Care Street™ predictive modeling and health coaching system helped the North Carolina Banker’s Association Health Benefit Trust experience two consecutive years of below average insurance renewals and the slowing down of healthcare cost increases.

Despite the average 7.7 percent annual healthcare cost increase faced by employers from 2005 to 2006*, the North Carolina Banker’s Association Health Benefit Trust renewal rate dipped to 5 percent in June 2007. As a result of this decrease, the North Carolina Banker’s Association Health Benefit Trust came in $1.2 million under the projected budget for its healthcare expenditures and will be able to offer North Carolina Bank employees a one month “holiday” from paying healthcare insurance premiums.

“We have been working more than eight years to slow down healthcare expenditures and relieve our members’ burden with it comes to premium increases,” said T. Rann Paynter, Executive Vice President Community Bank Services.

In 2005, The North Carolina Banker’s Association introduced a new approach to population health management to stem yearly healthcare cost increases. Offered to its 2,272 member employees, CareGuide’s One Care Street system combines predictive modeling science and health coaching support to identify people who are likely to use large amounts of costly healthcare services before they need such services over the coming 6-12 month period.

The One Care Street system moves beyond disease management, which relies on past healthcare usage to find those that will use large amounts of healthcare services. One Care Street identifies a broader range of indicators that make people seek help (physical, emotional and behavioral) and put an employee at risk. Research has demonstrated that the standard disease management approach is accurate in identifying only 10-15 percent of the people who will actually use large amounts of healthcare services, as compared to the 63-67 percent of high utilizers reliably identified by One Care Street.

“As costs continue to go up, employers are getting more aggressive and taking matters into their own hands when it comes to trying new ways to stem insurance renewal increases,” said Julie A. Meek, Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President of CareGuide. “These results show that if you help employees earlier and better, healthcare costs can be contained, which improves a company’s bottom line and the health of its employees.”

Once employees are identified as high-risk through the One Care Street survey, health coaches work one-on-one with participants to identify negative contributing factors, motivate employees and provide the resources necessary to change health behaviors. In 2006, 77 percent of the North Carolina Banker’s Association Health Benefit Trust member employees identified as high-risk participated in CareGuide health coaching.

Scott Insurance, an employee-owned provider of benefits services and risk management consulting, manages the One Care Street program for the association. “As expected, we found many employees that needed immediate help, not due to any one diagnosable disease, but a mixture of symptoms such as headaches, fatigue, feeling frustrated, angry or depressed, or suffering from allergies or arthritis. These are warning signs that people need help and if provided soon enough, employers can avoid the higher, longer-term costs,” added Diana Mason, Vice President at Scott Insurance.

*According to the 2006 Kaiser Family Foundation’s Employer Health Benefits study.

About North Carolina Banker’s Association Health Benefit Trust

The North Carolina Banker’s Association Health Benefit Trust, representing more than 50 member financial institutions across the state of North Carolina, provides medical and dental insurance benefits programs.

CareGuide, Inc.
June 11, 2007