If you don’t provide health insurance to your employees it’s probably because you’ve decided you just can’t afford it. While it’s true that groups aren’t always cheaper there is another really important thing to consider. There is a dramatic difference between individual health insurance and group health insurance, and now more than ever. Here are 3 ways your employees will benefit from a group policy over the choices they now have on the individual marketplace:
Perhaps they really can keep their doctor.
We all remember the famous promise that proved untrue. That’s because each carrier created separate doctor networks for their ACA Individual Marketplace plans and many doctors have opted out of those networks (or were asked to leave), in favor of other networks that offered more flexibility in managing care. For example, United Healthcare’s ACA network is called Compass Balanced whereas the network for their group plans is called Choice Plus. The Choice Plus network is considered a much better network. This applies to every major carrier in the industry. It’s more likely that your employee will find their family doctor in the Choice Plus network than the Compass Balanced.
They might save money.
Most groups are billed compositely, which means that older employees are going to benefit from being in a group with younger people. I recently wrote a group policy for a title company in Texas. One of their best employees was struggling because her husband had been diagnosed with cancer, couldn’t find an ACA plan that had MD Anderson in network, and was paying $1,800 in monthly premiums. Once the new plan was in place, MD Anderson was in network and her paycheck deduction was reduced to just over $600! Now how loyal do you think she feels about her employer?
They will typically get better benefits.
Group policies often provide benefits that you just won’t find on the individual marketplace. Nowhere is this more evident than with dental plans. I rarely recommend dental policies on the individual marketplace. The coverage is typically very limited, have long waiting periods, and simply do not cover things like orthodontia.
Most small businesses compete for the best talent and health insurance is one of the best ways to do it, especially since Obamacare has struggled to live up to the hype. Group insurance isn’t for every small company, but for some it may be the difference between keeping or losing your best people.