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Tuesday, Jul 23, 2024

Celebrating 30 Years of Healthcare Excellence: A Journey of Dedication and Impact

In 2023, California Schools VEBA (VEBA) celebrates a significant milestone, commemorating 30 years of steadfast dedication to delivering high-quality, affordable, and accessible health care to education, municipal, and public agency employees. VEBA’s journey has been measured by extraordinary achievements that have transformed lives and communities in San Diego and the surrounding Southern California area. 

Formed in 1993, through the united efforts of school superintendents and representatives of both the California Teachers Association (CTA) and the California School Employees Association (CSEA), VEBA is a 501c(9) non-profit trust focused on saving public sector employees and their families money on their healthcare. VEBA is governed by a committed group of volunteers, who facilitate effective labor and management collaboration to deliver the highest quality programs at the lowest possible costs. With three decades of unwavering dedication, VEBA has become a cornerstone of reliable and comprehensive healthcare support, with a focus on fostering whole person well-being. This remarkable journey reflects the synergy between visionary leadership and a commitment to enhancing the lives of those it serves.  

“As the Co-Chair of the California Schools VEBA board, it’s been an honor to serve with such a devoted group of professionals who prioritize the healthy collaboration between the labor unions and district management professionals in order to best serve our members and their access to whole-person health.” – Robin Watkins, Co-Chair, Representative (Classified) American Federation of Teachers, Local 1931 

VEBA’s impact is nothing short of astonishing, having saved its members and their families hundreds of millions of dollars in healthcare costs. Committed to breaking down the barriers to achieving optimal health, VEBA aims to ensure that everyone has access to quality care. 

Since its inception, VEBA has made personalized and holistic treatments for both the mind and body a cornerstone of its mission. This commitment was further demonstrated by the establishment of the VEBA Resource Centers (VRCs), holistic health centers developed to help members overcome obstacles and become the best versions of themselves. The VRCs offer resources for mental, emotional, physical, and social well-being, bridging gaps in the current healthcare model. This innovative approach to wellness and healthcare gives members the resources needed to enhance their quality of life.  

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 “It’s an exciting time for California Schools VEBA. We’re in a period of incredible growth and I’m thrilled to see new districts and employees making the excellent, and frankly economically sound, decision to join VEBA.” – Brian Duffy, Co-Chair, Superintendent, Julian Union Elementary School District.

VEBA is on track to double its impact this year, driven in part by the remarkable success of the VRCs. VEBA serves as a community bedrock of support for nearly 150,000 members and a network of 66 employers and school districts. And, not surprisingly, it’s a community that continues to thrive and grow. The Resource Centers have experienced an incredible response, attracting as many members in the first six months of 2023 as they did during the entire year of 2022. This surge in engagement shines a light on the growing significance of VEBA’s initiatives and the expanding reach of its services. To better serve its expanding districts, VEBA is embarking on a journey of expansion, with a new VRC in Carlsbad under construction, in addition to its existing locations in Kearny Mesa and Mission Valley.  

While the pandemic ushered in a renewed appreciation for in-person experiences, VEBA’s online presence remains vibrant. A treasure trove of FREE on-demand workouts, cooking classes, and meditation sessions ensures that VEBA members can continue their health journeys from the comfort of their homes. Facilitating this transition, VEBA’s commitment to accessible health journeys extends beyond physical spaces to include virtual access. 

In 2024, VEBA is excited to announce two new innovative initiatives. Poised to be the first educational entity in California to offer KindBody. Exemplifying its dedication to health equality and expansion, this partnership will provide fertility, family planning, women’s health, and menopause benefits to VEBA members. 

Additionally VEBA was approved by the Department of Managed Health Care to launch VEBA Direct HMO. This ground-breaking initiative is the first of its kind direct contracting HMO pilot program. By negotiating directly with providers and building their own network, this initiative will revolutionize access to healthcare – a true testament to VEBA’s innovative spirit.  

As VEBA’s programs and outreach flourish, so does its team, as it prepares to surpass the 100-employee milestone by year’s end. With accolades like the Healthy People 2030 Champion designation and a regional Emmy Award, VEBA’s impact extends beyond healthcare, enriching communities and lives. 

From the passion of its people to the brilliance of its offerings, California Schools VEBA stands steadfast in its mission to set the gold standard for healthcare. As we raise a toast to three decades of progress, we’re inspired by VEBA’s legacy and eagerly anticipate another 30 years of transformative change. Cheers to setting the standard in healthcare excellence, today and beyond! 

To learn more about California Schools VEBA visit www.vebaonline.com


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