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      Dougherty County healthcare within new law parameters

      Spencer Allen, the healthcare consultant for Dougherty County, says spending is down from last year.He says this is saving the county a significant amount that could have added up to millions of dollars.

      Over the last two and half years we've avoided about $4.5 million in additional spending that the county would have had, said Spencer Allen, Dougherty County Group Health Plan Consultant.

      The overall reason for health savings is because the population is becoming healthier says Allen. He explained that digestive and cancer claims are down.

      This information about the county's healthcare plan comes not long before the Affordable Care Act goes into place. Officials say with the enactment of the affordable care act they'll need any additional funds.

      "One of the provisions of the act requires that Dougherty County pay a fee for reinsurance and that fee is going to cost the county about $50,000 in 2014 and they've never had that before," said Spencer Allen.

      Since the county's health care program is already aligned with the Affordable Care Act, Spencer Allen says the only change the county will have is an annual $50,000 fee.