July 27--PacificSource, one of the newest and biggest private health insurers in Montana, is opening a new, main office for the state in Helena and has hired a Montana insurance executive as its regional director.
PacificSource plans to open the new office in downtown Helena this fall and has hired Todd Lovshin as its new vice president and Montana regional director. Lovshin starts Monday, said PacificSource spokeswoman Kathy Born.
Lovshin most recently has worked in Helena as vice president of corporate development and government relations for Allegiance Benefit Plan Management, a Missoula-based insurance company.
"We're excited to have Todd join our team," said Sujata Sanghvi, executive vice president and chief operating officer for PacificSource. "He brings extensive knowledge, relationships and experience to our enterprise in Montana."
PacificSource, Allegiance and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Montana are the now the top three health insurers in Montana selling individual and group health coverage.
Based in Springfield, Ore., PacificSource entered Montana last year as part of an antitrust settlement involving New West Health Services, a Helena-based health insurer that sold off most of its commercial business.
State and federal Justice Department officials arranged to have New West sell a large chunk of its business to PacificSource, to avoid having the state's dominant health insurer, Blue Cross Blue Shield, take over too much of the private health-insurance market in the state.
New West remains as a company that sells only Medicare Advantage, a supplemental insurance product for those covered by Medicare, the federal health insurance plan for the elderly and the disabled.
PacificSource took over New West's policies that provide regular health coverage to individuals and businesses.
PacificSource now covers nearly 10,000 people in Montana and more than 285,000 people in Idaho, Oregon and Montana, Born said.
She said the company is actively marketing its health plans in Montana now, seeking new business and individual clients.
The new office will be in downtown Helena's Great Northern complex and should be open this fall, Born said. It will be PacificSource's headquarters for Montana, replacing two other sites in Helena, she said.
She said the company currently employs eight people in Montana and will be hiring more "based on the needs for the region."
"We're committed to serve Montana for the long term and want to have a strong local presence," Born said.
(c)2012 Independent Record (Helena, Mont.)
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