To help your employees make the most informed decisions, here are 5 questions that employees should be asking themselves when selecting a health insurance plan:
1. Do you need to shop for a new plan?
In some scenarios, an employee's existing health insurance plan will not be available the following year. By this point, employees should have been notified of any changes being made to an existing insurance plan for the following year. They also may have received a letter stating that the existing policy would no longer be available in the following year. These notifications can help an employee determine if it's necessary to shop for a new plan.
2. What will your healthcare needs be in the coming year?
Are you planning to start a family? Do you anticipate the need to have surgery? Do you need prescription drugs? Human resources should encourage employees to jot down any of their known or potential upcoming healthcare needs so that an insurance plan can be chosen to best accommodate those needs.
3. What is your budget?
Many employees with little to no health issues that want to save as much money as possible opt for a high-deductible health insurance plan. While this type of plan offers lower monthly premiums, the out-of-pocket expenses are much higher if medical care is needed. On the other hand, someone dealing with a chronic illness or someone that requires monthly medications may do better budget-wise by selecting a plan with more coverage (and higher monthly premiums in exchange for this).
4. Is your employer contributing?
Some employers will contribute to employees' health insurance premiums. This can be an effective way to help off-set the rising cost of healthcare for your employees, and it also can offer some tax advantages to the company as well. Employees should be reminded of this every year, so that they recognize the value of working in a company that offers employer sponsored benefits.
5. Can you keep your current doctors?
When employees switch health insurance plans, their doctors may become out-of-network. In this scenario, the employee could either look for a new doctor that is in-network or pay the higher out-of-network cost to be able to continue to see the same doctor. As a best practice, employees should check with their existing doctors and prescriptions to make sure that they would still be in-network with their new health insurance plan.
At Summerlin-Roberts, we want to make open enrollment go as smoothly as possible for your company. We want to serve as a valuable partner to your human resources team. Please contact us for more topics that you should be talking with your employees about to help them choose the best health insurance plans for their needs and budgets.