Small Group Savior? Another Look at QSEHRAs

Magnifying glass looking at health care newspaper headline, on cash

Small employers are often looking for ways to break out of the community rated market and lower their health insurance costs, as I’ve witnessed firsthand and written about over the years. In more recent posts we’ve discussed reference-based pricing, PEOs and self-funding as methods small employers can use to potentially gain access to more favorable plan designs and rates. There’s… [Read More]

Reference-Based Pricing – Not Just for Large Groups Anymore

Reference-Based Pricing – Not Just for Large Groups Anymore

“It’s not health insurance that’s expensive; it’s the cost of healthcare,” a keen observation from a recent blog post by Frenkel Benefits’ president, Craig Hasday. It’s safe to reason that anything which lowers the cost of healthcare should lower premium rates – but is it that easy to get done? Employers try to mitigate healthcare costs in… [Read More]

Student Loan Debt Repayment Benefits

Student Loan Debt Repayment Benefits

It would be nice if employers could set up a standardized benefit package that appealed to all employees across all demographics – but the reality is that one size doesn’t fit all. These days, many older employees are delaying retirement and there’s a strong influx of talented young employees entering the workforce. Employers are increasingly… [Read More]

Take Advantage of Health Insurer Cherry Picking

Take Advantage of Health Insurer Cherry Picking

I frequently witness the frustration of small group employers over the inability to customize plan design or receive premiums that reflect the health of their employee population. Growing companies often look forward to hiring their 51st employee, the magical threshold where many state insurance laws allow rate negotiation and some plan design flexibility. Some states even… [Read More]

Small Group Renewals – the Devil Is in the Details

Small Group Renewals – the Devil Is in the Details

With year after year of large premium increases, it’s no wonder many employers are happy to receive a health insurance renewal below 10% – but low-percentage renewals can often gloss over key changes to the policy that are not boldly highlighted in the renewal offer. So what kind of changes are we talking about here?… [Read More]

PEOs – Key Factors You Need to Consider

PEOs – Key Factors You Need to Consider

Professional Employer Organizations (PEOs) have continued surfacing as a solution for many small employers, but where do you begin when trying to understand if a PEO is right for your business? Decide if a PEO makes sense for your business BEFORE evaluating the savings. A PEO can seem tempting when quotes come back 10% to 20%… [Read More]

21st Century Cures Act: Welcome Versatility in the Small Group Market

Time for Change

Reversing prior IRS and DOL guidance, the newly-signed 21st Century Cures Act allows small employers to use a new Qualified Small Employer Health Reimbursement Arrangement (QSEHRA) to give employees money that will pay for an individual health insurance policy. Under the law, employers can provide up to $4,950 for single employees and $10,000 for family… [Read More]

Three Simple Questions to Help You Answer: “What is the best health insurance policy?”

three-simple-questions-to-help-you-answer-what-is-the-best-health-insurance-policy

With all of the changes to the health insurance markets over the past few years, “What is the best health insurance policy” is a question that I’m often asked. But this is challenging to answer because no “one-size-fits-all” policy exists in the world. Many factors must be considered – and laying out more money on… [Read More]

Out With the New and in With the Old

Health Insurance Changes

After last year’s collapse of the New York health insurance co-op, Health Republic, the depleted health insurance market for employers with less than 100 employees can expect the return of an old player: Blue Cross Blue Shield. But this old player is changing up tactics a bit. Operating as Empire BCBS in NY, this insurer… [Read More]

Examining Multi-Tiered Networks to Minimize Premiums and Foster Consumerism

Examining Multi-Tiered Networks

As health insurance premiums, copays and deductibles become unbearable, we’re often faced with clients who feel completely out of options during renewal conversations. They don’t want to switch carriers, but are out of levers to pull in order to control costs. Now we’re seeing carriers step in with an interesting solution: multi-tiered networks that align… [Read More]