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Chart book offers insight into plans' administrative costs

Growing transparency in healthcare costs, along with the shifting of a higher cost burden onto consumers, is forcing health plans to scrutinize their administrative expenses. Web-based technologies make significant improvements possible and make cost-effective health plan administration a key competitive factor. A new chart book from the Sherlock Company in Gwynedd, PA, provides insight into the administrative performance trends in the company's expansive Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS), provider-sponsored, and all-plan universes. Sherlock has conducted health plan administration performance benchmarking for 10 years. In 2005, the company added seven health plans to its universe for a total of 43, says Douglas B. Sherlock, CFA, senior healthcare analyst and president.