Guardian Introduces HSA-Compliant Medical Insurance Plans

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Consumer Driven Health Insurance

The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America (Guardian) today announced that its HSA-Compliant medical insurance plans are now available in New Hampshire, Maine and Massachusetts to help meet the growing demand for consumer-driven healthcare options. The HSA-Compliant medical plans are High Deductible Health Plans (HDHP) that meet IRS requirements for use in conjunction with Health Savings Accounts (HSA), a common type of health insurance plan.

"As medical costs continue to rise, employers want to provide their employees with affordable benefits and greater flexibility and control," said Rich White, Senior Vice President, Group Insurance, Guardian. "Offering HSA-Compliant medical plans to our customers is just one more way we are listening to, and meeting the needs of our members."

Guardian's HSA-Compliant medical plans can be used in conjunction with HSAs offered by any qualified financial institution. Individuals can find the HSA that is best for them through their employer or on the Web at http://www.HSAInsider.com HSA-Compliant medical plans help employers save on medical insurance costs by reducing premiums -- and like most HDHPs, these medical plans offer lower rates than similar medical plans with lower deductibles.

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Guardian's new HSA-Compliant medical plans also provide incentives for employees to become more educated about their healthcare decisions by opening HSAs, which enable them to save for medical expenses not covered by the HDHP, on a tax-free basis. In addition, employers may choose to use all or part of their premium savings to contribute to employees' HSAs.

"Before consumer-driven health care options like HSA-Compliant medical plans became available, some small businesses could not afford to offer traditional health insurance to their employees," said Stu Shaw, Vice President, Group Products, Guardian. "We are excited to make this option available to the 20 million small business owners throughout the country who can benefit from this lower premium cost while offering a vital employee benefit."

In addition to the HSA-Compliant medical plans, Guardian also offers consumer-driven health plans to employer groups in select markets through an alliance with Destiny Health. This healthcare option provides consumer-controlled savings accounts for discretionary and discounted services, and offers comprehensive coverage for uncontrollable costs like hospitalizations.

For more information, please contact your local Guardian Group Representative.

Founded in 1860, The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, New York, NY (Guardian) is the fourth largest mutual life insurance company in the United States. As of December 31, 2004, Guardian and its subsidiaries had $39.5 billion in assets. With more than 5,000 employees and 2,900 financial representatives, as well as over 80 agencies nationwide, Guardian and its subsidiaries protect individuals, businesses and their employees with life, disability, health and dental insurance products, and offer 401(k), financial products and trust services. More information about Guardian can be obtained at: http://www.GuardianLife.com

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