The Importance of Employee Benefit Plans

A well structured employee benefit plan can help attract and retain productive employees that contribute to the bottom line of your business. Being aware of the tremendous impacts we all know is important. The absence of a valued employee due to health and stress related issues is costly, time-consuming and can be challenging to deal with from an HR perspective. In 2011, a Statistics Canada study found that businesses lost 105 million workdays due to employee illness and personal reasons, an average of about 9.3 workdays lost per employee.

According to a 2012 Conference Board of Canada study, these absences cost the economy an astounding $16.6 billion. When the costs associated with those absences are double and sometimes triple the cost of drug claims, we know we have a bigger problem than first imagined. Employees suffering long-term illnesses with no definitive diagnosis is a major and costly problem in the Canadian work place. Like most things in life, preventive maintenance can help avoid major problems. A well structured employee benefit and wellness program can help employees take care of themselves, remain healthy and stay productive.

It’s essential employers understand that investing in each employee’s health and well-being is not only a meaningful gesture, it’s good for business. This is why many leading employers now offer employee benefits that provide in-depth expert medical reviews, customized health coaching, and much more. Employee benefits plans can ensure your employees are getting the right diagnosis and treatment plan in the early stages. This will maximize productivity and improve morale in your company.

When compared to employees obtaining coverage on an individual basis, employee benefit plans are far more cost-effective. Through a group plan your employees will obtain enhanced dental, extended medical, prescription drug and access to disability coverage with no medical testing and at a discounted rate. The leverage of buying your coverage as group has its advantages. It is standard practice that private sector employers share the cost of the monthly premiums with their employees

There are a variety of options when it comes to constructing a plan that works well for your company. The nature of your business, your employee demographics and the type of budget you have available will all be considered when selecting the type of plan that works best for you.

Having employers and employees work together can form a powerful team against medical uncertainty and the millions of lost workdays that result from incorrectly diagnosed or improperly treated conditions.

Aetna Insurance – What to Expect From Aetna Health Insurance

Connecticut-based Aetna offers a wide variety of health insurance plans for families, individuals and students. Aetna also offers benefits through various employers throughout the United States. If you are interested in purchasing Aetna insurance, you should know that many of their plans are designed as Health Maintenance Organizations, or HMOs. This means that you will be required to select a medical provider from the network to be your Primary Care Physician. However, Aetna prides itself on offering choice to consumers and has a variety of other insurance options available. Nearly 19 million people in the United States receive medical insurance through Aetna.

Not all of Aetna’s plans force patients to deal with an HMO. Aetna also offers several PPO (Preferred Provider Organization) Plans as well as a few more traditional options that allow patients to visit any provider they choose. Students can also choose to purchase Aetna insurance if they are not covered under their parents’ plans. Most plans are competitively priced and, due to the network structure, may have lower deductibles than similar plans from other companies. Available plans may vary from state to state.

Aetna offers dental insurance as an addition to its health insurance plans, although dental is not offered as a stand-alone product. Benefits and rates will vary. Dental plans through Aetna are structured much like their medical insurance; you can choose a DHMO (Dental Health Maintenance Organization, or as Aetna calls it, a DMO), PPO, indemnity, or freedom-of-choice. People who choose to enroll in a DMO plan will be required to choose a Primary Care Dentist who will take care of all needed dental care. Preventive care is covered in full once every six months and basic procedures are covered after a co-pay has been determined. Aetna insurance also offers life and disability insurance for interested parties.

Although Aetna is one of the leading insurance providers on the market, like any other company it has both advantages and disadvantages. Aetna does impose pre-existing condition exclusion periods and performs extensive medical underwriting. Young mothers may want to consider another health insurance provider if they are pregnant and cannot cover the costs themselves. Aetna insurance does not cover maternity-related expenses; it does, however, cover pregnancy complications. Newborns are also covered for the first 31 days. Finally, Aetna does not provide insurance to anyone older than 64 ¾ years old. The broad coverage and competitive pricing Aetna provides may be enough to offset these drawbacks. Do your research before you make a final decision.

If you need assistance finding coverage with Aetna, please visit our website at http://www.health-insurance-buyer.com and provide your contact information so we can respond to your request and guide you.

The Health Insurance Basics For Individual and Family Health Medical Plans

Let’s start with the basic terminology with health medical plans (health insurance).  There are three basic coverages to a plan, the deductible and coinsurance (coins) and the frequently used copay.  I will explain them below.

Deductible: This is what you pay out of your pocket before the insurance company pays any claims. Deductibles are on an annual basis and reset every January first. This is similar to your car or homeowners insurance policy.

Coinsurance: Once you meet your annual deductible, the insurance company shares some expenses with you until you reach your annual maximum out of pocket. Plans are written as 80/20 plans or 90/10 plans, they always add up to 100%. This is not unlimited there is a stop loss for you.

 

Co-pay: A co-pay is the amount you pay for a visit to the doctor (HMO or PPO plans) or a pharmacy prescription plan. The copay has nothing to do with the annual deductible and not all plans have co-pays.

 

What should a family look for when buying health insurance?

 

If you see the doctor a lot or your children frequently need a doctor’s care you may want a Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) plan. An HMO is a type of plan that has a network of doctors and facilities that you must go to for health care. Your health insurance company will have a list of doctors for you to choose from and the doctor you choose is the doctor you must go to when you feel sick.  You the patient is responsible for when you visit a health care facility with a co-pay, this is good for an individual or family with children that need to see the doctor many times in a year.

 

If you’re a person who does not go to the doctor a lot except for a checkup, you may want a PPO plan. These insurance plans have a network of providers that you can go to receive health care at a discounted or negotiated rate. Although there is a network of doctors who agree to the negotiated rate not all do and these are considered out of network. A PPO health plan allows you to go to out of network doctors but you will be responsible for the higher non-negotiated cost of health care.

 

The greater the insurance coverage, the higher the premium that you need to pay for individual and family health insurance.

Buying Health Insurance Online

The internet is a powerful way to shop for insurance. Most health insurance quotes from websites will let you run comparisons of all types of plans from all the top health insurance carriers. You can search and purchase insurance online without the need to talk to an agent. The prices for insurance plans are state mandated and no one website can give you a better quote than another.  Buying direct from the insurance company won’t save you money either, everybody has the same price.  Working with an agent gets you free advice and helps you sort out plans that are best for you.  So shop online, there is no obligation to buy and you can complete applications right online.