Blue Valley School District embraces Spira Care

March 2023

Back in 2018 when Blue Valley School District (BVSD) first offered a Blue KC health plan with exclusive access to Spira Care, about 4%1 of employees selected it. They were attracted to the plan’s low-to-no-cost2 office visits, full array of primary care services, and emphasis on reducing the complexity and stress of healthcare.

Little did anyone know that those early adopters were the leading edge of a Spira Care wave within the district. Today, 43%1 of BVSD employees are enrolled in a plan with exclusive access to Spira Care.

Employee enthusiasm is as palpable as that last-day-of-school feeling:

“It’s the best healthcare I have received.”

“It’s an immediate calm and positive experience when I walk through the Spira Care doors.”

“I like the flexibility of being able to utilize the Spira Care centers and having access to a large network of providers.”

“I appreciate having a behavioral health specialist on site. When I’ve used the behavioral health service, it was convenient, personal, and helpful.”

Blue KC plans with Spira Care – A preference of Blue Valley School District employees

We talked to Dr. Jennifer Spencer, Director of Human Resources for Employee Benefits at BVSD, to understand why plans with Spira Care have become a preference among employees. She touched on low cost, convenience, and personalized care.

BKC: Why did you choose to offer plan options that include access to Spira Care Centers?

Dr. Spencer: We were first introduced to the Spira Care model back in 2018 when Blue KC offered an innovative option that included advanced primary care in one location. Spira Care provides a level of convenience that could make a difference for an employees’ entire family because it serves all ages, from pediatric to adult care. It made medical assessment and treatment simple for families.

Additionally, Spira Care Centers are open extended hours, offer virtual care, and its Care Guides will schedule appointments with in-network specialists for members who need it.

We offer two different Spira Care plan design options, so employees can choose the one that best meets their family’s needs, such as a low deductible plan or one with a higher deductible and health savings account.

BKC: Let’s talk about BVSD’s enrollment in plans with Spira Care, which has grown from 4% – 43% over four years. What do you attribute this significant growth to?

Dr. Spencer: Access to advanced primary care at low-to-no cost for office visits is attractive to employees. Often, employees are concerned about unknown costs when visiting a physician. Spira Care removes that concern. And importantly, our employees have seen that low-to-no cost doesn’t mean reduced care. Spira Care has proven to be quality care.

BKC: BVSD also has one of the highest Spira Care Center attribution rates3, which essentially means your employees are visiting the centers in record numbers. Which we love to see! What do you think is getting them through the doors?

Dr. Spencer: Given Spira Care is offered at low-to-no cost, and employees are able to access care quickly, they have not hesitated to use it. Plus, the ability to get multiple services in one visit – such as x-ray4, lab draws, and behavioral healthcare – has resonated. It pushes all the right buttons – low cost, convenience, treating the whole person.

There’s one more thing that’s been a game changer. If an employee needs a specialist, a Care Guide will help find one in the plan’s network, prepare for the visit, understand the specialty care needed, and facilitate communications with the specialist’s office. Care Guides have proven to be a wonderful piece of the Spira Care model. 

BKC: What added value do your employees get from a plan with Spira Care?

Dr. Spencer: When an employee walks into a Spira Care Center, from the very first appointment, they are met with personalized care. The Care Team immediately begins to build a relationship, assessing and treating the whole person, including behavioral health consultations, health coaching, routine lab draws, and x-rays4 on site. This added value is drawing our employees to Spira Care in greater numbers every year.

BKC: You mention behavioral health consultations as an added value. Could you drill into this a bit?

Dr. Spencer: Yes. Employees appreciate the on-site consultation in the same facility as primary care. It’s quick access to behavioral health, which can be hard to locate. Plus, our employees like that they can schedule a primary care appointment and a behavioral health consultation all in one visit. Spira Care’s attention to behavioral health reinforces the understanding that primary health serves the whole person, physically and behaviorally.

Talk to your Blue KC representative about offering Spira Care

Make the move to Spira Care for your employees. You’ll get more than a place to go for your healthcare needs. You get people you can count on to help your employees on their health journey. Your Blue KC representative can work with you to explore plan designs that give your employees exclusive access to Spira Care Centers. Contact your Blue KC representative to learn more.

1As of December 2022.

2Blue KC members enrolled in a plan without a health savings account with exclusive access to Spira Care Centers will have no costs for any services provided at a Spira Care Center. Blue KC members enrolled in a plan with a health savings account (or an HSA eligible plan) with exclusive access to Spira Care Centers will have an affordable charge for services. Preventive services are covered at 100%.

3As compared to other Blue KC large employer groups. 

4X-rays not available at Lee’s Summit and Liberty locations.

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