The Employers Guide to Controlling Healthcare Costs

(left to right) Benjamin Watts, Liberty Bell Bank; Joseph DiBella, Conner Strong & Buckelew; Will Hussey, Cook Moran; Amy Webb, Saratoga Benefits

Amy Webb, President of Saratoga Benefits recently participated in a multi-chamber forum, Navigating Healthcare – South Jersey’s Healthcare Forum. She participated in a panel, The Employers Guide to Controlling Costs.

The panel included: moderator Joe DiBella of Conner Strong & Buckelew; Ben Watts of Liberty Bell Bank and Will Hussey of Cook Moran.

The goal of the panel was to inform employers about the issues surrounding the ACA reform and educate them about what they need to know when making healthcare decisions for their employees.

Some take-aways:

Affordability: The biggest challenge facing employers today is finding a benefits plan that is affordable for both the employer and employee: finding a premium that isn’t cost-prohibitive while also offering co-pays and deductibles that their employees can afford.

According to a 2016 study by The New Jersey Business & Industry Association (NJBIA), providing health benefits is their Number 1 problem. Even with consistent cost increases, employers continue to offer coverage as a way to attract and retain employees. Eighty-three percent of employers continue to offer benefits to attract employees.

Panelist President & CEO of Liberty Bell Bank, Ben Watts shared this thinking. As the employer of a small business, he would prefer that they did not need to shoulder the responsibility of deciphering complex employee benefit choices.

Education: One area where the expert panel saw room for improvement was to enhance employee education about HSAs and HRAs. By better understanding how their policies function, employees could take advantage of additional savings.

Self-Funding: This is a bit of a misnomer since it is still an insured plan but with a much higher behind-the-scene deductible that the employer funds. The employees still see more traditional-type copays and deductibles when they visit the medical provider. This can help lower payroll deductions for the employees and save the employer money as well.

Questions about ACA or benefits? Contact Amy Webb.

 

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