Remember when HMOs were considered the “cheaper” health insurance option? Check out how large a hike you’re in for next year with these new benchmarks.
It’s that time again! Many companies are gearing up to negotiate with their health insurance carriers for the coming year.
But before you pick up that phone or schedule that sit-down, you want to know how much wider your peers are going to be opening their wallets for HMO coverage in 2009.
Check out the new predictions from benefits benchmarkers Hewitt Associates:
To see if your budget will have to be that much bigger, compare Hewitt’s other numbers to the increases you endured this year and the year before. The closer your company’s experience matches recent averages, the more stock you can put in 2009’s predictions.
You don’t have to sit back and accept these HMO hikes. Experts at Hewitt maintain organizations can reduce overall increases by at least two or three percentage points, with these three strategies:
- Aggressive negotiations
- Changes in plan offerings and design, and
- Greater focus on employee health and well-being.
One thing you want to steer clear of if at all possible: increasing employees’ co-pays.
At a time when many companies are holding salaries steady, asking employees to pony up more for their HMO may be too much for some of them to handle.