When it comes to group health insurance, at the end of the day there are only 2 basic questions every employer asks themselves:
- What are the benefits I want to offer my employees?
- What is the best way to pay for them?
Question #1 has to do with the types of plans or benefit designs an employer wants to offer employees – to attract and retain. This can range from a typical PPO plan with modest deductibles, copay’s, etc., to a High Deductible Health Plan with a HSA, HRA, HMO, dual option plans, etc. There are obviously many variables here.
Question #2 addresses the financial side of the equation. Is it best to fully insure the health plan with an insurance company, or is it best to utilize some kind of alternative funding that gives an employer greater control over costs and cash flow?
Let’s focus on Question #2 because alternative funding allows customized plan design so your current plan can be duplicated. When it comes to alternative funding, there are options here as well:
- Level funding
- Partially self-funded with an insurance company – what we refer to in the industry as a “bundled” plan
- Partially self-funded with an independent Third Party Administrator, stop loss, Pharmacy Benefit Manager, etc. – one which we refer to as an “un-bundled” plan.
There are advantages and disadvantages with all of these, but all of them can give an employer greater control over their plan rather than simply paying an insurance company monthly premiums. Because these plans require a greater understanding of how they operate, and what an employer needs to know, I am offering a free educational webinar each month to cover a variety of specific topics. Expert guest speakers will be included to offer additional industry information and insight.
Even if your plan is currently self-funded, you can learn how to supercharge your plan to garner even greater savings through a variety of innovative programs and techniques that you may not even be aware of.
Here’s a calendar of educational webinars for the balance of the year:
June 30 Partial Self-Funding 101: Financial Options and Planning For Your Upcoming Renewal
July 16 Bundled vs. Unbundled Plans
August 13 Reinsurance: Stop Loss and Stop Loss Captives
September 17 Reference Based Pricing and Direct Contracting vs. PPOs
October 20 Pharmacy Benefit Management and Specialty Drugs
November 12 Customized Plan Design Opportunities
December 10 Diabetes Management
I will be recording these and also maintaining them on my website and YouTube channel. Keep a look out for upcoming monthly invitations. I know you will find them highly informative!
Take care. Be well. Be safe.
Frank Stichter has been in the health insurance industry for >35 years. Listen to how he has helped companies save between 20%-40% on their health insurance costs while improving the benefits for employees.