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Prepaid Expense Cards: A Win-Win Solution.

Organization Saves Time and Money; Cardholders Reduce Risks and Learn Skills

Cassie Kelleybrew used to spend hours writing up to 60 checks per week – 4000 annually – to her clients. The process was time consuming, costly and came with risk. She found a solution that created internal efficiencies, and helped clients better manage their money.

As an account specialist for Burrell Behavioral Health, a community mental health clinic comprised of 400 clinicians serving 17 Missouri counties, Kelleybrew is responsible for the Supported Community Living (SCL) program. She works with individuals with a mental illness diagnosis who are working on or awaiting their social security benefits – a process that can take up to four years. Her clients receive living expenses and allowances for basic living needs from the Missouri Department of Mental Health.

“Issuing allowance checks weekly was a nightmare for our organization and our clients,” said Kelleybrew. “Prepaid Expense Cards solved many of their challenges.”

Creating Efficient Processes

Instead of writing thousands of checks annually, she issues each client a CommercePayments® Prepaid Expense Card. Kelleybrew can automatically upload funds to their reloadable, prepaid Visa® cards. Moving away from paper has reduced the cost of printing checks, and made the reconciliation process more efficient for the accounting department.

Burrell Behavior Health takes advantage of many real-time benefits offered by the Prepaid Expense Cards, including:

  • Loading, reloading and unloading funds to multiple cards at one time
  • Issuing or replacing lost or stolen cards
  • Limiting cash access
  • Monitoring and reviewing transactions online
  • Establishing automatic and scheduled reloads

Reducing Risk

Clients used to cash checks and then have to manage those funds. If that cash was lost or stolen, clients faced challenges such as paying bills or buying groceries and other necessities. If a check was lost or stolen, if often took up to a week to issue a replacement. Now, if a card is lost or stolen, Burrell can instantly place a hold on purchases and immediately issue a replacement card. A Prepaid Expense Card is also a safer option for making online or in-store purchases. Since implementing the Prepaid Expense Card program a little more than two years ago, Commerce Bank has identified and alerted Kelleybrew of several fraudulent online purchases made on clients’ debit cards.

Managing Money

When clients are being served by Burrell Behavioral Services, it may be the first time they have had to manage their own money. The Prepaid Expense Card reports help case managers work with clients to better understand how they are spending their money. It also provides case managers with a tangible way to discuss budgeting and prioritizing purchases.

Relying on Commerce

Burrell is a non-profit organization with a lean team. They depend on their Commerce Bank CommercePayments® relationship specialist to help them find ways to operate efficiently and identify solutions to its challenges.

“The CommercePayments® customer service team is phenomenal. I just call my relationship specialist at Commerce Bank any time I have a question or an issue and she finds a solution,” said Kelleybrew. “For example, she recently helped me tailor specific reports for different needs. She provides thorough explanations for everything the system can do, which helps me take advantage of all of the Prepaid Expense Card benefits.”

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CommercePayments® solutions are provided by Commerce Bank.