Consumer-directed health plans, or CDHPs, make a surprisingly big difference in improving your employees’ health, thus cutting down on health care costs and helping your business’s bottom line. In fact, according to American Medical News, “Annual health care spending in the U.S. could be reduced by as much as $57 billion” if 50 percent of the insured started using these plans. Learn more about how your company can reduce spending through CDHPs.

While the benefits of a CDHP are obvious to those who take the time to research them, your employees won’t necessarily be enlightened, so the manner in which you present a CDHP to your employees plays a big part in their usage, too. Start by explaining to your workforce that CDHPs typically consist of high-deductible plans combined with reimbursement arrangements for employees’ health plan expenses. The plans require employees to pay closer attention to how much they spend on health care, since they’re typically allotted a certain amount of money each year and have to watch where every dollar goes. But how exactly does this type of plan improve health and ultimately benefit your business?

Employees Financially Benefit From Good Health

Some CDHPs combine high-deductible plans with a health savings account (HSA). Employees have a tendency to view the funds in an HSA as their own money, rather than the company’s money, resulting in more cautious spending. Employees who don’t spend their full yearly HSA amount on health care costs can roll over that money to the next year.

These are major incentives for employees to improve their health. They often become more proactive when it comes to healthy lifestyle decisions and getting preventive checkups in order to reduce their own costs. This, in turn, reduces your business’s health care costs, too.

Healthier Employees Work Better

When your employees are healthier, they’re more productive on the job. This isn’t just because they’re taking fewer sick days; healthier employees can actually work more efficiently. Poor health leads to disengagement at work, which lowers productivity. If you can’t focus on your job because your health is distracting you, how can you do your work to the best of your ability? In fact, a Gallup poll found that employees who suffered two to three chronic health conditions took 3.5 sick days per month, compared to employees with two or fewer chronic conditions, who only took up to 1.08 monthly sick days.

In summary, the benefits your business might enjoy from CDHPs are pretty straightforward. Employees are more cautious with how they spend their own money, and if they think they might financially benefit from saving on health care, they’ll be more proactive in living a healthy lifestyle. In turn, healthier employees are also more productive on the job. If you want to utilize your CDHP to its maximum benefit, focus on these points when you’re educating your workforce.

Stephanie Dwilson has extensive experience providing expertise on topics including health, law and marketing. She’s a science journalist published by Fox News, a marketing expert and an attorney with expertise in personal injury law. She’s also a small business expert featured by Businessweek and Millionaire Blueprints magazine and has worked as a marketing consultant for ministries and as a PR lead for one of the largest churches in America.