Survey Shows Strong Employer Interest in Health Benefits, Private Exchanges, and Independence

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Independence

A recent survey of over 400 employers reveals that employers are committed to offering health benefits to active employees, and that interest in private exchanges remains strong. In addition, the vast majority of employers surveyed reported that it is very important for their advisors to be independent of any exchange ...

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SCOTUS Decision Looms Over 2015 Benefit Strategies

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On November 7, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear another challenge to the Affordable Care Act. In 2012, the Court upheld the constitutionality of the law’s requirement that individuals obtain health insurance or pay a penalty and limited the Federal government’s ability to withhold funding for states that did not expand eligibility for Medicaid. This new case is perhaps not as significant as the 2012 case, but employers should still be aware of how its outcome could affect their ...

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2015 Public Exchange open enrollment begins Saturday

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Public exchange open enrollment will begin on Saturday November 15 for both individual and SHOP plans on healthcare.gov. The Public Exchanges allow for direct comparisons of qualified health plan (QHP) options on the basis of price, quality and other factors. QHPs are grouped into four “precious metal” tiers based on their actuarial value: platinum, gold, silver, and bronze. The Public Exchanges also coordinate eligibility for subsidies such as premium tax credits and cost-sharing reductions.

The first public exchange open ...

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Employers taking steps to drive health plan value

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Employers are continuing to take steps to get the most value out of their employee health plans. Responses from the 2014 Towers Watson/NBGH Employer Survey on Purchasing Value in Health Care show that the best-performing employers are acting aggressively to improve their health plan cost trend and also help employees manage their well-being. Steps taken by employers include establishing coverage tiers based on the number of covered dependents, modifying health ...

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Consumer-driven health plans offer opportunities for employers, employees

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Consumer-driven health plans (CDHPs) continue to grow in popularity due to the opportunities they offer both employers and employees. According to America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), CDHP enrollment rose to 17.4 million in 2014, an increase of 6 million since 2011.

Consumer-driven health plans can be distinguished from traditional health plans by their higher annual deductibles and the opportunity to invest in a Health Savings Account (HSA). Higher deductibles make members more mindful of the cost of their care, which promotes ...

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Attack your Employee Benefit Plan from All Sides

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Over the past year, Mueller QAAS has helped many employers create a comprehensive employee benefit strategy.  That strategy is never one-size-fits-all, or contains only one option.  To truly address cost, an employer must look at their employee benefits holistically and use a combination of cost-containment strategies.

For example, switching to a high deductible health plan engages employees in health spending, but it doesn’t address the health of the population or prevent further cost-shifting in the future.  An employer may see some ...

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