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Gowrie Group Extends Health Insurance to Shore-based VIPCA Members

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St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. The Gowrie Group, a leading marine insurance agency that manages the comprehensive crew health insurance and yacht insurance programs offered to active members of the Virgin Islands Professional Charter Association (VIPCA), is pleased to announce that starting February 1, 2022, coverage will be extended to shore-based active VIPCA members.

“The VIPCA Crew Medical Program has been such a large success, that the shore-based membership has asked to be included in the group association health plan for the year too. The U.S. Virgin Islands does not offer individual health plans and small group policies are extremely pricey and hard for a group to access. Working with CIGNA and VIPCA, plus understanding the needs of health insurance in the territory, Gowrie has been able to secure affordable health insurance to the shore-based vendors and businesses that are part of the active VIPCA membership,” says Rick Bagnall, Senior Vice President, Gowrie Group, Division of Risk Strategies.

Photo: Rick Bagnall, Senior Vice President, Gowrie Group, Division of Risk Strategies, speaks at VIPCA’s 2021 USVI Charter Yacht Show. Credit: Kody Zenger.
Photo: Rick Bagnall, Senior Vice President, Gowrie Group, Division of Risk Strategies, speaks at VIPCA’s 2021 USVI Charter Yacht Show. Credit: Kody Zenger.

Highlights of Gowrie’s insurance plan for shore-based VIPCA members include worldwide coverage, coverage in the U.S. CIGNA National network, two plans to choose from with varying deductibles, up to $5,000,000 per Policy Year limit, and monthly credit cards or EFT payments.

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CIGNA provides global assistance and benefits. With 24/7 medical management services, multilingual claims administrators, and highly trained customer service professionals, this health insurance plan brings VIPCA members the products they need, backed by the service they deserve.

Enrolling in the VIPCA Shore-Based Medical Program is as easy as 1-2-3.

First, are you a VIPCA supplier, a business that serves or services VIPCA clients and members, or a VIPCA vessel owner or manager?

Secondly, if yes, are you interested in the VIPCA Health Insurance Program?

Third, if yes, then become a VIPCA Personal Member for $150 annually. To do this, visit vipca.org/personal-membership/ Next, download and submit the VIPCA Health Insurance Application found at vipca.org/shore-based-insurance/. Email the completed health insurance application to vipcahealth@gowrie.com Once accepted, insurance payment is online by EFT or credit card payments.

“For years VIPCA’s Board of Directors have been working to provide shore-based insurance for our members because we saw the value in having quality, affordable healthcare for our marine vendors, marine service providers, and their employees. I saw that personally. While running a marine services company, one of the most important benefits I hoped to provide to our technicians was healthcare. However, we kept running into roadblocks because there was no other individual or group health insurance option in the Virgin Islands available to the public. This new health care program for VIPCA’s shoreside members from Gowrie Group changes the existing situation in a significant and positive way. I am proud that we as an organization are available to provide this to our members,” says Peter Pieschel, member of the VIPCA Board of Directors and Chairman of the Vendors Committee.

For more information, contact a specific member of the Gowrie Group’s VIPCA Health Insurance Team: Rick Bagnall, rickb@gowrie.com, (860)-391-7161, or Barbie Murray-Orne, barbiem@gowriecom.com, (860) 399-3630. For Yacht Insurance Consultations, contact Mark Gargula, markg@gowrie.com, (860) 391-7371. Or visit


VIPCA is the territory’s 501(c)(6) non-profit marine association, whose purpose is to promote, protect and further the capabilities of charter yachts and the marine businesses that sustain them. Projects and initiatives VIPCA membership supports includes producing a marine directory of local information, technical advice, and resources; improving Customs and Border Protection facilities; facilitating access for charter vessels between the USVI and the Spanish Virgin Islands; compliance guidance; installation of territory-wide new transient moorings; and marine vocational training for V.I. youth under the organization’s charity fiscally sponsored by Community Foundation Virgin Islands (CFVI.net), the Marine Rebuild Fund. vipca.org

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Carol M. Bareuther, RD, is a St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands based marine writer and registered dietitian.

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