Note: This is Part 3 of a 3-Part employer series.
In my last post, I talked about the importance of health literacy.
If your employees don’t know the difference between a coinsurance and deductible – insurance basics – then how do you expect them to make healthcare decisions that won’t negatively affect your total healthcare costs?
You have to crawl before you can walk.
But literacy itself is NOT enough
Your employees need to feel like they’re part of the same team as YOU and your company.
If they know something is wasteful or wrong, but they have that “Why should I care? The insurance company makes billions of dollars so cheating them is just part of the game” attitude, then you’re not going to get the best results.
That’s silly, right?
When would an employee or spouse ever do that?
Um…does this sound plausible: “My child’s knee is sore after they played in Saturday’s game. I want an MRI and a specialist to take a look. It’s all covered under my insurance and I’ve met my deductible, so DO IT!”
Or, maybe something more mundane, like “My child has a cold, I want you to give me a prescription for antibiotics.”
- Instead, they should let a clinician make the diagnosis and recommend actions.
- They should understand enough to ask informed questions and advocate for themselves or their child.
Or, it might be something as simple as not understanding the best venue for treatment.
- If you offer a generous emergency room benefit because you want your team to be treated quickly in an emergency (without worrying too much about cost) but they use the E/R every time their child has the sniffles, you BOTH are in for a nasty rate increase.
One last thought…
If you take input from your employees and consider what’s best for both the company and for their families, you might come up with some innovative ideas that not only provide for healthier individuals at a more efficient cost, but also inspire loyalty.
- Young workers might value a less expensive Health Savings Account (HSA) that follows them from one employer to another throughout their careers and eventually flows into their retirement savings.
- Employees with families might appreciate plans with clinics for children or 24-hour Urgent Care, and so on.
Our Chief Marketing Officer, Lance De Peralta, will be talking about open enrollment from an employee’s point-of-view in a series of insightful posts.
We encourage you to share & discuss them with your employees.