Changes in healthcare are prompting many Employers to rethink employee benefits like health insurance at their companies, and Brokers should take notice. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers, health insurance premiums are expected to rise by 6 percent in 2020. Below, we explored some of the top health insurance trends that may impact your clients.
To combat rising premiums, many businesses may be looking to switch their insurance offerings to high deductible health plans (HDHPs). HDHPs can be paired with health savings accounts (HSAs), which offer major advantages like tax-free contributions and tax benefits.
According to the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM), 56 percent of Employers offer HSAs as a benefit—a percentage that is expected to rapidly increase in the coming years. HSAs have risen 12 percent year-over-year, with assets growing by 20 percent annually, according to Devenir. The investment advisory and consulting firm projects that by the end of 2021, the HSA market will reach $88 billion in assets held by more than 30 million accounts.
Prioritize Preventive Care
Along with rising premiums, unhealthy habits can further drive up healthcare expenses. While weight loss goals and promises to quit smoking tend to be popular New Year’s resolutions, expect to see preventive care become a larger priority for Employers in 2020.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost half of U.S. businesses offer some type of wellness program. Thinking beyond counting steps and logging water intake, initiatives like gym memberships, screening tests, and smoking cessation programs may rise in popularity.
It can be inconvenient and costly to see a physician in person, especially when factoring scheduling issues, co-pay fees, and possibly out-of-network charges, should your client be unable to find an available in-network provider. Telemedicine, also referred to as telehealth or virtual care, can be a good solution, as it allows patients to consult with a medical provider via a computer, smartphone, or tablet.
According to the National Business Group on Health (NBGH), 56 percent of companies currently offer telemedicine. NBGH projects that nearly all companies will provide virtual care by 2020.
When it comes to federal regulations, compliance is critical. As a Broker, your clients trust that you’ll help them avoid any fines.
For businesses with at least 50 employees, Employers must offer the minimum essential health coverage that’s affordable or pay a penalty. In 2020, those penalties will increase by nearly 30 percent. While there are no expected updates to HIPPA, you’ll also want to make sure any technology or management systems you use remain compliant with HIPPA and HITECH.
Switch to Digital
In an increasingly digital world, health insurance enrollment will no longer be conducted via paper forms. According to Xerox, more than 80 percent of businesses want to create more paperless processes and workflows. With the management of paper costing as much as 31 times the cost of paper itself, switching to a digital solution could save you and your clients time and money.
Technology like FormFire’s all-in-one insurance platform can provide the secure, digital solution your clients need to compare health plans, make plan selections and manage qualifying life events throughout the year. Our single, flexible system offers a simplified benefits experience to allow your clients to spend less on group benefits management and more on the core of their business.