Employees should take more responsibility for their health care and its costs. Every time I read statements like this I cannot help but add, “now that employers have gotten us in this mess of out-of-control health insurance increases.”
For decades, employers made all the decisions about what health plans employees would have access to and how much they would pay for it. Employers were the ones sitting down with health insurer representatives and reviewing current year’s claim data and health plan options for the upcoming year, and “negotiating” plan renewal costs. I digress, but if you ever participated in a health plan renewal meeting, you know that there isn’t much negotiating going on.
Typical Health Plan Renewal Meeting
Insurer reps come armed with a script about why their underwriters are asking for a certain percentage increase. The usual suspects are actual claims, earned but not yet incurred claims, demographics (too many females at child bearing age or too many mature employees), and our good friend, medical trend. Hospitals and doctors are simply charging more for their services. And let’s not even talk about the trend for prescription drug costs.