What you call healthcare premiums, healthcare entities call revenue. To provide better employee benefits at a lower cost, organizations must include the tools necessary – empowering employees to be better healthcare consumers.
In December, ERA and Dynamic Benefits Solutions teamed up to host subject matter experts from Next Impact for an educational webinar on “Better Benefits for Less.”
This webinar addresses the topics:
- How to be proactive about healthcare costs
- How to ensure better employee benefits by emphasizing quality
- How to find resources and tools to make your workforce better healthcare consumers — saving both employers and employees money
Where to start?
The first step is to focus on quality and be proactive. It’s impossible to impact something that has already happened, so we have to change the mindset from thinking about healthcare costs after the fact to thinking before they happen. This drive for transparency will result in lower premiums for employees and employers.
By giving people the correct tools and resources, employees can compare providers’ prices and quality scores.
Data readily available thanks to requirements by the Center of Medicaid and Medicare Services Hospital Quality Initiative are an excellent place to start. The Center of Medicaid and Medicare services requires each healthcare entity to self-report their financials and quality if reimbursed by Medicare or Medicaid.
With more than 90% of hospitals reimbursed under this program, data on mortality, complications following procedures, readmissions, patient safety, and inpatient quality are available to the public. Often, hospitals with poor quality scores are “in-network.” Furthermore, the prices these hospitals charge are not regulated.
Since the Affordable Care Act has a minimum profit-loss-ratio detailed for insurance companies, it is in the hospital and insurance companies best interest for hospitals to charge more. Under the ACA, for every $1 of premium, insurance companies must spend 80-85 cents on claims. Their profit is part of the leftover 15-20 cents, so they often charge more to increase profit.
What can you do?
Next Impact data show 80% of healthcare costs are tied up in small transactions based on the facility your employees go to for big-ticket items. You can combat this by creating a healthcare-conscious, happier workforce.
- Be proactive – Get people to the correct healthcare facilities by offering incentives & providing access to information to make informed decisions.
- Be cost conscious – The workforce will receive better benefits, saving employers and employees money when empowered to get their MRI, surgery, etc., at the best facility (price and quality score-wise).
- Be helpful – In providing employees with a healthcare advocate to help them make the best facility decision within your insurance offering, you may be able to give incentives like fully paid premiums for those who engage with the advocate.
- Be transparent – In taking these steps, you and your workforce will experience increased transparency in medical facility costs, RX costs, etc.
In taking these steps, employee healthcare costs go down, allowing employers to build better plans through advocacy. Watch the recorded webinar to learn more about providing better employee benefits for less.
About the Host
Paula J. Kaeser – As an insurance expert, Kaeser assists companies in taking a holistic view of their health insurance benefit costs and product offering. Utilizing benchmarking data and insider knowledge, Kaeser assists company leaders in providing benefits that positively impact the bottom line and drive workforce satisfaction.
Contact ERA today to learn more about how we can help your business.