If you have a business that offers group health benefits to 2-50 full-time employees, an important date is arriving soon. On September 1, health insurance providers will be releasing prices for December 1, 2014 policy renewals. Anthem, one of the major group benefits carrier in Indiana, expects rates to increase by 13.5%. Last year increases came in lower than expected at only 5-7%. Once we receive the renewal documents, the WIFS Team will be reaching out to our clients with final numbers.
Needless to say, this rate jump may mean you will be looking for creative solutions to manage the higher costs. Fortunately, we have some options for you:
Worksmart– Indiana’s fastest growing PEO solution, Worksmart Systems has a cost-effective option to providing employee benefits. Endorsed by Anthem, their self-insured group health plan allows organizations to opt-out of the community-rate model* set by the Affordable Care Act. A high–quality, self-insured, and fully funded PEO solution, Worksmart offers competitive pricing without the volatility often seen with smaller programs. As the Indiana Broker of Record for Worksmart, the WIFS Team is in the unique position to present this option for your group health benefit plan.
Association Programs – WIFS has partnered with organizations like the Builder’s Association of Great Indianapolis (BAGI) to provide cost-effective private group health insurance benefits. Similar to Worksmart, these programs allow businesses to opt out of the community-based model. In this case, the association is medically underwriting the risk of the participating members. Like BAGI’s program, quality association plans are fully insured.
Keep Your Current Plan – The WIFS Team is skilled in guiding business owners through the choice of managing benefit price increases. Absorbing the costs, altering the percentages paid by employees, or amending coverage are all options. However, it is important to note that choosing to amend your plan for 2014 means automatically losing Grandmother status for 2015. Keeping this status allows you to stay outside of the ACA community-rated model for 2015.
Discontinue Group Health Benefits – One available option that few employers who offer group health benefits want to take is discontinuing their plans. Employees would then have to go out to the federal exchange for health coverage as Indiana does not have a state exchange.
Rising costs of doing business are always a concern for business owners. Come to WIFS for personalized solutions for your company’s situation. We are experts in navigating through the options to find the most cost-efficient, high-quality coverage for your employees. For more information, send us an email, or give us a call at 317.663.4138.
*Community-based model refers to the manner in which health risks are managed. In this model, the lower costs of covering healthy employees is balanced by the higher costs of covering unhealthy employees. The risks associated with each are leveled over the entire coverage base, and charged to all.