Private Exchanges Likely to Thrive in Changing Health Care World
With so much being discussed and written about the potential replacement of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) since the November 2016 election, you might think the future for all of the country’s health insurance exchanges is up in the air. However, there are five reasons private exchanges will likely continue to thrive in an ACA or post-ACA world.
A major concern for employers – today and for the foreseeable future – is “how much should I be paying for my employees’ benefits?” With a private exchange, the choice is yours . . . thanks to Defined Contribution. As an employer, you decide how much you want to contribute – a Fixed Percentage or a Fixed Dollar Amount. Then each of your employees applies your contribution to the health plan he or she wants. If the cost of the plan exceeds your employer contribution, the employee simply pays the difference through convenient payroll deduction.
The old-fashioned method of offering one carrier to all of employees doesn’t give them the ability to choose the coverage that best fits their individual or family health insurance needs. Today, one size does not fit all. Employees expect more, and a private exchange lets you give it to them. Employees can choose from multiple health plans, so they can choose the option that makes the most sense for them – and their budget.
Innovative Decision-Support Tools
Private exchanges, like CaliforniaChoice, offer tools to help your employees find out which doctors, hospitals, and prescription drug benefits are available with each plan. They may also offer tools to help potential enrollees identify likely out-of-pocket health care costs – and to match the right health plan to their specific health care needs. Online enrollment, which is available through most private exchanges, streamlines enrollment and gives you the ability to track who’s already enrolled and who still needs to complete their enrollment.
A private exchanges makes it easy for you to make coverage changes (including news hires and terminations), updates to your billing, and other tasks. You’ll also appreciate the dedicated support you get from a single service team all year long – and the ability to get answers by calling just one number or visiting one website whenever you need assistance.
A private exchange makes it easy for your group to annually adjust your Defined Contribution without leaving the program. This gives you more flexibility in controlling your future health insurance costs, while still giving employees the freedom to select a plan to meet their individual health care needs. Private health insurance exchanges continue to attract greater employer interest. Accenture says private exchange enrollment was up 35 percent in 2016. The Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM) says the movement is primarily driven by costs, administration, and a positive employee/enrollee experience. Ask your broker about whether a multi-carrier private health insurance exchange might be right for your business. Offering a private exchange could help you attract and retain more employees in an increasingly competitive talent marketplace. If you don’t already have an employee benefits broker, we’ll help you find a CaliforniaChoice broker to speak with about your group health insurance needs.