Can you suggest innovative ways to maximize the value from your benefits

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As an end-user:

Research the benefits you are enrolled. Many of them have hidden value.

Find out if your insurance carriers have mobile apps. Quite often the apps will help raise awareness to hidden perks that you can utilize. Vision insurance especially is one to look at as they frequently have discounts tucked away.

Ask your employer if they have a wellness program. If they do, ask how you can participate and what it can do for you. Sometimes participation earns you contributions to your HSA…sometimes it lowers your monthly medical premiums.

USE THE PREVENTIVE CARE. Seriously…that stuff is free on plans for a reason. Use it. Just make sure the care provider is in-network and they pre-check the claims with insurance to make sure the visit is coded correctly to be free under the plan.

If you are in your Annual Open Enrollment period, make sure if you are paying for a benefit that you are ACTUALLY drawing value from it. Why pay for a voluntary benefit like Dental if you do not get your teeth cleaned? Trust me…this happens way more than people admit.

If your company offers match dollars for 401k or other savings account…make sure you contribute enough to get that match. It is free money…take it.

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As a Plan Sponsor:

Work with your carriers and review usage information. If your population is not using the Preventive Care under the plan, consider a communication and education campaign to help your population. Early diagnosis helps them life healthier lives and helps you reduce costly catastrophic claims.

Look at your Prescription Drug spend. If your plan is getting hit with high-cost Specialty medications, talk to your carrier about any programs that might help with cost control. Participants HATE rules when it comes to insurance, but steering behaviors to appropriate care and deliver of medications are some of the most effective ways of keeping costs down. We have a mail order requirement for maintenance medications. While not popular, it is substantially cheaper than allowing retail fill on those medications. Lower plan costs mean lower participant premiums. Win-win.

Communication is key. If your benefits have low utilization, participants will feel as though the benefits they are paying for offer little value. Remind them that they can use their benefits for more than emergencies! Dental, Vision, Group Accident, Critical Illness, and other plans often have perks that deliver value when people know what is included. But education takes time and effort. Both are worth their weight in gold in terms of Benefits.

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