Coping with the Rising Costs of Health Care

Due to the escalating costs of medical care and new regulations, businesses of all sizes are struggling to provide employees with attractive benefits at costs they can afford. Business owners concerned about productivity and employee morale may want to consider the following options as you begin planning for 2012.

Increased Transparency
Health care reform has given rise to a lot of questions and uncertainty among employees, so there has never been a greater need to paint a clear picture of what your benefit plan includes and why. Offer details on coverage, costs and the impact these costs are having on your operation.

Listen to Employees
Allow employees to research the different health care options your company provides and when possible, engage them in the decision making process. Some employers have had great success by organizing committees from all employee levels and listening to their input before adopting plan designs.

Promote Wellness
Successful wellness programs not only keep medical costs lower, but they can build camaraderie and loyalty. Access to health risk assessments and incentives or discounts off annual costs when wellness goals are met are things you should consider. Weight loss or healthy eating challenges with proceeds going to charity are fun ways to help your company and your community.

Revisit CDHPs
High deductible health plans with health savings accounts (HSAs) or health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) are growing in popularity. Along with Section 125 Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs), these options provide tax savings and increased responsibility to plan participants.

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