NU Online News Service, May 27, 2003, 12:32 p.m. EDT – A unit of Health Net Inc., Los Angeles, will be making heavier use of the USelect defined contribution health plan design, according to Vivius Inc., Minneapolis.

Vivius, the company that developed the design, says Health Net Life has been testing it in Spokane, Wash. More than 90% of the employees who could join the USelect plan signed up, even when employers also offered traditional health plans, Vivius says.

Health Net now wants to introduce USelect plans in 14 more communities over the next three years, Vivius says.

Employers that participate in USelect give employees a set amount of cash for health coverage.

Employees then use the USelect Web site to create their own personalized panels of doctors and hospitals for themselves and their dependents. Employees also set their own co-payment levels and premium contributions. Employees can reduce monthly premiums by changing their provider panels or increasing their co-payments, Vivius says.