Employers from the smallest companies to the largest are strategizing over what they will offer in the next 5 years in the realm of health benefits. While many companies will renew current benefit plans, many smaller companies will stop offering health insurance because of increased cost. These employers may encourage employees to go to the federal or private exchanges. Larger companies (employees over 100) will offer defined contributions, and encourage employees to have annual wellness and risk assessments in order to create a healthier workforce and attempt to keep costs down.
Generally speaking, employees who participate in the assessments will pay less for insurance and those that refuse to do the risk assessments will pay more. Some companies offer wellness points and employees will have to maintain a certain number of points to pay the lowest cost available. Elements of an employee’s health, such as cholesterol, high blood pressure, smoking, and other risk factors will determine health costs.
The landscape has changed and it is now up to employees to manage their healthcare costs. Employees can be proactive in their wellness initiatives and take preventative measures through lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, exercising, and eating healthier foods. Employers can encourage healthy lifestyle choices among employees and provide support that will benefit their human capital. Many states offer free help to stop smoking, such as Florida (tobaccofreeflorida.com), to help employees choose an option that will work for them.
Anthros Inc. assists businesses in healthcare compliance, provides guidance for future employer health strategies, and offers consultation as well resources for employees looking to minimize healthcare costs.
About the Author:
Helen Usher – Director of Benefits
About Anthros, Inc.:
Anthros provides expert back-office solutions in human capital management-from payroll and human resources, risk management and workers’ compensation to business consultation and beyond. Anthros focuses on “Human Capital” so businesses can focus on profits.