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Shenandoah Life Launches New Vision Care Insurance Plan

ROANOKE, Va., April 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Shenandoah Life Insurance Company announced today that it has partnered with EyeMed Vision Care to launch StarVision(SM), a new group vision care insurance plan.

Vision insurance is a wellness benefit that helps combat the costs of regular eye exams and vision correction. Routine eye exams can provide information about overall health and help spot health problems, including diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol and glaucoma, in the early stages of development.

"We are excited to work with EyeMed to add a vision care plan to our group product portfolio," said Cynthia Light, vice president, sales and marketing for Shenandoah Life Insurance Company. "With nearly 150 million Americans wearing corrective lenses, a quality vision plan allows employers to strengthen their benefit package with a useful, yet relatively inexpensive, benefit."

In recent years, vision insurance has become one of the fastest growing segments in the group insurance business. Increased eyestrain, caused by extended hours in front of a computer monitor, and the addition of baby boomers into the senior market have escalated the need for vision correction.

Vision insurance can add to an employer's benefit package, which can support recruiting and retaining employees, and help address work productivity concerns. The Journal of American Optometric Association found in a study published in 2004 that a slight miscorrection in eyesight can reduce productivity by 40 percent and computer eyestrain can reduce productivity by 50 percent.

Employers can offer StarVision(SM), which can be administered at two plan levels and various rate tiers, as an integrated part of their benefits plan or on a strictly voluntary basis. In addition to its new vision care plan, Shenandoah Life offers a full line of group insurance products including dental, life, and long term and short term disability. Products are available to employers of all sizes, from two lives plus.

EyeMed is a national leader in vision care, providing network accessibility to 140 million members through a large network of providers and the nation's leading optical retailers including Lenscrafters, Pearle Vision, Sears Optical, JCPenney, Optical, Target Optical and private practitioners.

Shenandoah Life Insurance Company, headquartered in Roanoke, Va. is a mutual life insurance company with more than $1.9 billion in assets and $15 billion of insurance in force (source: 2007 audited annual financial statements). The company was founded in 1914 and operates in 31 states and the District of Columbia.

SOURCE Shenandoah Life Insurance Company
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