Your Employees: Informed Healthcare Consumers

Do your employees understand their benefits? Are they using them properly?

Many Americans spend more time researching cell phone carriers than they do learning the details of a health plan. Educate your employees about healthcare benefits, and you’ll have a workplace staffed by informed healthcare consumers who stand to reduce claims costs and absenteeism rates.

Here’s where to begin.

Make employees aware of the important services available. Most people know that the annual exam with a primary care physician is a covered event. Other preventive services (these are age and gender specific – check your carrier’s website) are also covered. These include

colonoscopy, mammogram, pap smear, diabetes screening, tobacco cessation counseling, depression screening and immunizations like the flu shot.

After ensuring your workforce understands these initial coverages, share additional information. Answer the following questions to hone in on the topics that need to be addressed.

  • Do your employees know the importance of staying in network to avoid possible balance billing?
  • For minor illness questions, is telehealth assistance available?
  • Do employees understand the difference in cost between urgent care and ER visits?
  • Are they aware of the tools available through carriers to obtain the estimated costs of procedures or services in order to utilize the best facility at the best pricing?
  • Are employees prescribed maintenance medicines using pharmacy mail options to save money and time?
  • Are individuals aware of the meaning of the health savings account and how to properly use it?

Empowering employees with the knowledge to utilize their medical, dental, and vision insurance can lessen their stress when a medical event arises. Be creative with your marketing to grab their attention. For example, sharing employee testimonials about a successful telehealth visit will probably make more of an impact than just a flyer. Monthly or quarterly “tips” can reinforce the importance of healthcare consumerism as well.

An informed patient/employee can save time and money by utilizing benefits properly. For more information regarding how you can educate and support your employees to become more informed healthcare consumers, feel free to contact me at