With a bit a research you will find that nearly every report, from bloggers to Rand, clearly report that Wellness Programs that have a Disease Management program AND effectively communicates with the employees, will see the most return for their investment.
Spending a lot of money on Healthy Lifestyles is warm and fuzzy and may help the country out in the long run, but there isn’t so much of a bang for a buck. Especially for the average 100 employee group.
True wellness companies just aren’t in that small employer (<500) market any longer and the costs associated with putting one together just don’t make sense.
In a time where the competition lies in the bells and whistles, most carriers have built in a wellness program for their clients. Anthem Blue Cross of California has one of the best I have seen. Their Wellness Program is called “Time Well Spent” is turnkey. It provides the employer and the employee with the following:
- Wellness calendar with links to print or download 3 different flyers on the topic of the month. This allows for quick distribution to employees.
- Provides an introductory brochure to let employees know that it is time to get online and create an account for their health plan.
- They are reminded to get their annual exam so they know their numbers. Risk Assessments require current cholesterol, blood pressure and sugar
- Provides a free Health Risk Assessment.
- Employees with identified risks will be contacted in some manner by the carrier to jump into their disease management program.
I cannot detail the cornucopia of information that is available through this program. I can say that Anthem of California’s is very impressive and user friendly.
Frankly, most carriers have these program. In order to stand out to our clients, I try to pass the information on to both employer and employees. Although, without the commitment from the employers, they won’t get much traction. In the case of Anthem Blue Cross, it is VERY simple for an employer to decide if this effort will work for them. I only need print out the calendar, a few sample brochures, some of the reports backing up the efficacy of this particular route and get them going.
During this time of national change, employees are a bit worried about hearing from HR departments and Benefit Agents on their health plans. Employers looking for ways to bring some sunshine into their benefit program should consider this opportunity to spread a little positive action.
Leave a comment | tags: agent, benefits agent, disease management, employers, group insurance, health insurance, HR, human resources, small employers, Wellness | posted in Uncategorized
Professional health insurance agents have a front row seat to the carnage that ObamaCare is creating as it rolls out on top of Americans. We are the referees on the field. Over the next year, as our small business clients receive their 2014 cancellation notices, which every single one of them will, the pain inflicted is going to be hard to watch and a constant moving target to overcome. Nonetheless, we will fight to continue to deliver a winning result.
I’ve always thought of my “game” as another way of casually addressing my profession, a profession that I take very seriously. I have worked very hard for over 30 years to ensure the financial health and access to health care for all of my clients. There is an army of agents in this country who have remained very involved in health care legislation over the years to protect our clients from what is happening now. Because of this ongoing commitment to be involved on a daily basis, we also know this law better than anyone. No professional agent has been surprised by anything that has unfolded in the past 2 years as issues come to light. The complete and total destruction of access to affordable health care is in process. Continued financial health is being ripped from the hands of all of my clients.
As the dismantling continues and public outcry ensures, the administration makes minor gestures to settle the roar to a rumble. Moves to extend coverage on non-grandfathered plans, delaying the penalties of the employer mandate and blaming the chaos on the computer system are nothing more than distractions.
I truly believe that President Obama, his administration and their followers think this is a real “game” in the true sense of the word. Their primary goal is not to expand coverage to the masses or reduce the cost of health insurance. If it were, they would hang their heads in shame, not to be seen in public for years. Their goal is to win. They are out banging their chests in victory because they are winning the game.
Where there are winners, there are losers. Insurance agents see the effect of the bullying that has been perpetrated on the losing public every day. The scene plays out over and over with every phone call and every visit. An insured comes in because their plan has been cancelled and they need to replace it with an “ObamaCare approved metallic plan”. In most instances, the new market presents a plan of options that include twice the premium, twice the out-of-pocket risk and an overall reduction in benefits.
Consumers who have long become accustomed to dozens of choices in health care options, are shocked to find only 4 basic choices in this new world. It is truly heartbreaking as I watch the client walk in and go through the phases of denial. Their shock and anger are quickly turned into acceptance as I pat their hand and assure them that I am showing them all of their choices. There is no longer anywhere to go for reasonable options. At least we are around to show them the entire market. (Exchanges only show you exchange plans)
When I get to the point in the conversation where I have to tell them that more than half of the top rated physician and hospital groups are no longer included within their plan, they shrug their shoulders in complete and total surrender. They complete the application process and move on with their day. The problems they are about to face as they enter the exchange or overloaded insurer online systems is not their biggest problem. The technical problems are just convenient cover for the myriad of real problems. Their real problem is that they are living in a country that is retreating and accepting the beating that has been unleashed on them. This isn’t only redistribution of wealth; it’s retaliation on the successful middle class.
As I move around my business circles, I am amazed by how many people think this is all just going to go away and be fixed. American’s who think people are going to stand up and fight this national plague need to think again. No one is fighting this! Every single person that goes through process this gives up. They have no choice but to accept the increases in premium, thousands of dollars more in out-of-pockets costs and in most of my cases, a complete loss of access to the care that they and their children deserve.
If you are in the “sit back and do nothing while it implodes” crowd, you are in the same surrender mode. Have you considered what an implosion looks like? You need only to understand that many of the winners will lose their jobs, face a reduction in hours or be forced in and out of MediCaid as the Exchanges find their sweet spot. Thousands will find themselves on a medical access seesaw. At that point, we will all be on the losing team.
Has anyone stopped to consider what the effect of this complete surrender to a government imposed hardship is going to do to the working class people in this country? My clients are the majority. These are not people asking for handouts from the Exchanges or MediCaid. These are the people who make those programs solvent. They are too busy working to fight.
This President and his followers are nothing more than schoolyard bullies, dancing in the end-zone as the rest cower en masse. They got their win and they don’t care about the pain they are inflicting on the multitudes or the type of transformation of America they are causing.
Mr. President. Congratulations on your win. What are you going to do next?
1 Comment | tags: agent, bullies, california, cancellations, CoveredCA, deductibles, Exchange, financial health, group insurance, Health Care Access, health insurance, health insurance agent, increase, individual, legislation, MediCaid Expansion, Obama, obamacare, out of pocket, premiums, rate increase, small employers, subsidy, Temecula | posted in Covered Ca, Exchange, Health Care, Health Care Reform, PPACA