Washington DC: As healthcare costs continue to shift to consumers, it’s important to consider benefits packages that provide more holistic support outside the usual health, dental and vision policies. Consumers should be aware of the fact that there are plans available today that will aid in their overall well-being, which includes physical, mental and financial health.
As consumers select benefits options provided by their employer, here are 3 additional services to look for that go above and beyond a typical benefits offering:
- Fraud protection: According to the Identity Theft Resource Centre, by the middle of 2015, there were a total of 424 data breaches, compromising millions of consumers’ personal and financial information. It’s no secret that the move toward mobile technology and digital transactions has left consumers vulnerable; so benefits that include services to help protect employees’ personal and financial information should be viewed as a must-have option in employer-sponsored packages.
- Telemedicine: A Towers Watson survey showed that almost half of employers offer telemedicine, and by 2018 that number is expected to rise to 90%. Companies are starting to connect consumers to highly qualified health care professionals who can evaluate common conditions and provide personalized treatment remotely, offering a low-cost and convenient option, as opposed to a hospital visit.
- Benefits management support: According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), medical debts account for 52% of debt collection actions that appear on consumer credit reports. Not to mention, the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 1 in 3 Americans struggles to pay medical bills.
Luckily, many employers see the need for robust benefits offerings, with some incorporating new solutions to meet increased employee demand for more from their benefits provider. In fact, 34% of employers surveyed in a Towers Watson study indicated they already offer more customisation with voluntary benefits.
Companies like Aflac are expanding services, ranging from credit monitoring to supplemental accident benefits to helping provide employees and their families with financial protection.
Companies are beginning to offer administrative support to help negotiate employees’ unpaid medical bills. Consumers who are concerned about being able to pay for their medical expenses should investigate these options further, as it could help them protect their financial future.With more health care responsibility falling on consumers, now is the perfect time to search for and demand more from employer benefits packages.