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