NU Online News Service, July 8, 10:10 a.m. - Empowered Benefits L.L.C., Charlotte, N.C., has started a new defined-contribution health insurance program.

Employers who sponsor defined-contribution health programs usually provide high-deductible indemnity insurance to protect employees against catastrophic medical expenses, then set up and fund “personal care accounts” to give employees control over some cash that they can use to pay ordinary medical expenses.

Empowered Benefits has set up the personal care accounts so that employees can continue to keep any unused cash in the accounts at the end of the year.

Heritage EnCon Group Inc., Charlotte, a wholesale industrial distributor and contractor, is one of employers testing the program, Empowered Benefits says.