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Frustrated With Rising Healthcare Costs? Try a Different Path

Deviate from the status quo and consider a new solution to manage healthcare costs.

I frequently ask employers a rhetorical question: "who is frustrated with healthcare insurance?" Usually, this results in a chuckle and a nod or raised hand. The fact of the matter is that the habitually increasing costs, lack of transparency, inconsistency of quality clinical outcomes and no strong solution in the marketplace has left most employers and their employees scratching their heads in frustration.

As a result of this frustration, the healthcare market is experiencing major ripples from increased demand for transparency and technology to rapid vertical and horizontal integration by major players in the system to new disruptive entrants. Specifically, the partnership between Amazon, JPMorgan Chase Bank and Berkshire Hathaway has drawn a lot of attention. At this point, no one knows exactly how this partnership will shake out, but clearly, these companies are well past the tipping point and frustrated with the lack of solutions available for them to control costs. Leveraging their size, scale and technology, they are aiming to develop a program focused on cost control, transparency, member engagement and quality clinical outcomes.

This is great for large companies, but what can small and mid-sized employers do? Unfortunately, this is not a rhetorical question. While there are no silver bullets that exist to solve all of the issues associated with healthcare, there are progressive programs that can help. Group captives are one such program that can bring together small and mid-sized employers to achieve the scale and stability to proactively manage risk, engage members and control costs over the long-term.

In fact, a recent article in Benefits Magazine highlighted a group of employers who formed a captive with 2,500 employees and later touted average annual medical increases of 2.0% from 2010-2015. Most employers would agree that a 2.0% increase is within normal inflation parameters and acceptable budget standards. How did this group of employers achieve such great results?

Well, the first step is to take a leap of faith and to challenge the organization to do something different and outside the norm. This can be difficult, but is necessary to move forward toward a potentially better place over time. Like any journey, it might be a little harder than the status quo, but the fruits of that labor will be plentiful in the end. Contact your local OneDigital consultant for more information about the benefits of joining a group captive.

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