Health Plan Design is a Strategic Business Decision According to a Korn Ferry Institute professional survey, the top reason candidates choose one job over another today is company culture. Twenty-three percent of respondents selected this reason as their top priority. Benefits were not far behind, with 19 percent choosing this as most important. However, the two are closely related. Companies are focused on being the best in their industry. They don’t have the time to devote to staying abreast of changes in the healthcare industry as new options become available. They look to their benefits brokers to help them add value to their employees while also protecting their profits. Here we’ll examine what employers are looking for and how brokers can help them stand out to potential candidates. Employers View Healthcare as Strategy The nonprofit Business Group on Health (BGH) represents large employers and conducted the 2021 Large Employers’ Health Care Strategy and Plan Design Survey in May and June 2020. The survey captured data from 122 large employers offering coverage to more than 9.2 million employees and dependents. Seventy-seven percent of the companies were building health plans for more than 10,000 employees. In addition to strategies for high-cost claims, employers are looking for fresh approaches to linking healthcare with workforce strategy. Forty-five percent of the employers said their healthcare strategy was an integral part of their workforce strategy, compared to 36 percent in 2019. Direct Primary Care (DPC) is a healthcare model that helps employers attract, motivate and retain employees in employer groups of all sizes. Here we’ll examine how DPC helps companies build full-bodied health plans that not only promote better employee health but make employees feel valued. Virtual/Telehealth Services Telehealth was rapidly gaining acceptance when a global pandemic catapulted it into the national spotlight. Many former in-person activities are being re-envisioned remotely, and that trend is here to stay. With 52 percent of large employers looking to offer more virtual care and telehealth options, it’s easy to see why direct primary care has become a go-to strategy. One of DPC’s key benefits is unlimited telehealth or virtual DPC visits for no out-of-pocket costs to members. The affordable monthly membership fee gives employees access to licensed medical providers online or by phone 24/7/365 for minor illnesses and injuries. This benefit means there are no deductibles to meet before insurance can cover a sick child or an injury from a minor accident. Families don’t have to forgo care because they don’t have the emergency funds saved to visit a primary care provider. Mitigating High-Cost Claims Thirty-one percent of large employers surveyed want a strategy to contain the cost of high insurance claims. Direct primary care is not insurance but rather a healthcare membership that typically covers acute care, early chronic disease management, annual physicals, and urgent care. DPC shields employers’ health plans by diverting claims for care provided within the membership from insurance plans such as high deductible plans, Minimum Essential Coverage (MEC), health share plans, or others. Because DPC is a healthcare membership, it can be layered into any health plan at any time of the year to begin modifying employee behavior and impact costs by limiting claims exposure. Flexibility is the Future The Korn Ferry survey asked professionals to predict what job seekers will value most from a prospective employer five years from now. Twenty-six percent of respondents chose flexible working situations. Even before the pandemic, flexible and remote work opportunities were waxing. Work from home productivity stats from 2018 shows that people who work remotely at least once a month are 24 percent more likely to be happy and productive. As brands expand their workforce nationally and remotely, they want to offer a healthcare solution for their employees that is consistent across all 50 states. Twelve percent of large employers are looking to adopt networks of high-performance healthcare providers in 2021. With a nationwide direct primary care provider like Healthcare2U, members can access primary care physicians in every state, face to face or virtually, for one low membership fee. This membership takes flexibility to a whole new level for today’s mobile workforce. When designing a health plan that works for today’s labor pool, the only limit is your imagination. If you’d like more information on how to bring a DPC solution to forward-thinking clients, contact Healthcare2U.