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Summary: Healthcare concerns are in the spotlight more than ever as we approach the 2020 presidential election, experience changes in the judicial system, and continue to navigate the impacts of COVID-19. This article will speak to ways businesses can protect both their employees and their healthcare budgets in times of uncertainty.
Healthcare Options During Turbulent Times
Healthcare is always a hot topic, but never more so than during a presidential election and the start of a new term. And with judicial and social reforms – not to mention a global pandemic – 2020 has been an especially overwhelming election year.
As a result, businesses are up against tough challenges and choices. Health coverage is one. You may be struggling to choose the right plans, stressed over a tightening budget, or worried about the future of healthcare.
Here are four ways to protect the health of your business AND the health of your employees:
Research your choices
Researching different health plans for your business is a wise move. A new type of plan could save money while maintaining great coverage for employees. Two options worth exploring are Balanced Funding plans and Consumer Driven Health Plans (CDHP).
A balanced funding plan is a form of self-insurance created for smaller businesses. It offers the savings of a self-funded health plan with the peace of mind of a fully insured plan. Monthly payments are set in advance and there is a cap on your businesses’ financial responsibility.
A CDHP is a high-deductible health plans, often paired with a tax-free saving account like an HSA (health savings account). HSAs can be funded by either the employee or the employer – or both. Employees use HSA dollars to pay for medical expenses until their deductible kicks in. Not only are these plans less expensive for the employer, they offer significant benefits to employees including:
- Monthly premiums tend to be lower
- Contributions to the account are tax-free
- HSA dollars can be invested for future medical costs or retirement
- Contributions roll from year to year indefinitely
Use a broker to shop for coverage
For many employers, a long list of plan choices can be overwhelming. Health insurance brokers help navigate the complicated world of insurance selection. Their job is to guide you to the best plan options for your business needs.
Brokers understand the ins and outs of insurance. They also understand how political changes may impact health coverage like the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or COBRA. While you are not required to use one, a broker’s knowledge could be invaluable for your business.
Plan for the long term
Protecting your business financially is also important during a changing economic climate. Experts from Forbes’ Finance Council recommend opening a business savings or reserve account. Try to save six to 12 months’ worth of expenses. They also recommend thinking of ways to diversify or widen your client base during a recession.
Encourage employee wellness
Healthy employees are happier and more productive in their jobs, but also more resilient in times of change. Their good health can equal long-term cost savings for your business – a win-win.
Encourage employees to focus on self-care. Remind them to see their primary care doctor yearly and get a flu shot. Stress the importance of preventive screenings and routine exams. Lastly, provide education on emotional health and mental well-being, especially during a pandemic.
A little bit of diligence will go a long way to protecting your business during uncertain times. Even during politically turbulent times, it is important to look forward for the good of your organization and employees.