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Study - Trends in Healthcare Benefits and Defined Contribution Plans (DCPs)

Written by: PeopleKeep Team
December 16, 2013 at 2:43 PM

Healthcare reform is prompting employers to look at Defined Contribution Plans (DCPs) and health insurance exchanges. A recent study by Healthcare Trends Institute found that 59% of respondents were somewhat to very familiar with Defined Contribution Plans (DCPs), with a majority (73%) of those interested in DCPs considering it by the end of 2015. pulse_on_healthcare

These are a few of the key findings from Healthcare Trends Institute's national survey that polled 300+ human resources executives, benefit specialists, and other benefit decision-makers from across the country.

The study provides a benchmark of the current state of employee healthcare benefits, as well as the expected healthcare benefits outlook in response to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). 

Here's a summary of the study's key findings.

Snapshot of Healthcare Benefits in 2013

Of those polled, 95.2% offered health insurance with the majority of the health benefits offered by respondents’ companies including employee+ dependents (80.8%), PPO (70.8%), prescription drug (66.8%), and mental health (45.6%)

The majority of respondents (64.8%) indicated health benefits offerings were very important for retaining and attracting employees. Other reasons included employee morale and satisfaction, improving employee health, and matching competition.

importance_of_health_benefits

(Note: In the graph above the dark blue is "very important," dark grey is "not important".)

Respondents indicated healthcare reform will impact their employee benefits packages by increasing employee cost-sharing (38.4%) and increasing premium contributions (33.6%).

ACA_impact_health_benefits

Snapshot of Defined Contribution Plans (DCPs)

The majority of respondents (59.4%) indicated they were somewhat to very familiar with Defined Contribution Plans (DCPs) as they relate to health benefits. The top two perceived benefits? They help employees make more cost-conscious benefit decisions and lead to better understanding of benefit cost.

DCP_benefits

Of the respondents who indicated they were interested in DCPs for the future, 55.8% reported they were considering for 2015 followed by 26.9% in 2016, and 17.3% indicated considering DCPs before the end of 2014.

Snapshot of Private Exchanges

The survey also asked about familiarity with private exchanges.
  • 62.1% of respondents are somewhat to very familiar with public exchanges and 55.5% somewhat to very familiar with private exchanges.

  • Of the respondents indicating they were somewhat to very familiar with exchanges, more than half (51.3%) indicated they believed exchanges will help employees make more cost-conscious benefit decisions as well as offer a wider array of options for benefit plans.

Source: Healthcare Trends Institute - Click here to read full study.

What strategies are you implementing or considering for 2014, 2015, and 2016? Leave a comment below.

 

Topics: Industry Reports, Defined Contribution Health Plans, Healthcare News

Additional Resources

Trying to decide which HRA is best for you? Take our quiz to find out.
Get our guide on how to offer health benefits with a small budget.

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