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Helpful Tips for Choosing a Group Health Plan for Your Medical Practice

Feb 19, 2015 2:42:00 PM

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As a Texas physician, owning a medical practice not only offers the opportunity to help heal patients, but it also gives you a chance to run your own business. While owning a practice is both exciting and rewarding, it does come with a related set of challenges such as operating expenses. One of the greatest operating expenses your practice will endure is providing group insurance and/or health benefits for your employees.

There are a wide variety of complex health benefit choices for employers, and finding the ideal coverage plan for your employees will be a balancing act between good coverage and ideal cost. Aside from the expense, offering your employees health benefits will help you succeed in the long run, as a comprehensive benefits package helps you attract quality candidates in the future and retain the current talent you have. It also sheds favorable light on you as an employer - one who has taken the time to research and choose the best health benefit plan for his or her employees.

When reviewing health coverage plans with your advisor, keep the following in mind in order to make the best decision possible for your medical practice staff.

4 Helpful Tips for Choosing Health Coverage for Your Medical Practice

Assess the needs of your workplace. Should you be paying for a top-tier drug plan if only one or two employees are utilizing it? Are insurance add-ons such as vision and dental more affordable if purchased as separate insurance from a different company? Will you offer both HMO and PPO type plans? If you decide to restrict coverage to just an HMO because of overall price, does the policy meet the needs of those it is covering?

Ask for your employees’ input. Your employees will appreciate a boss who asks their opinion and learns what they are looking for or need in terms of health benefits. Ask your staff what they feel comfortable paying each month in terms of copays, deductibles, and even cost sharing. They may prefer a policy with a lower monthly premium but a higher deductible, or vice versa. Some may desire a health savings account. The more input you have going in, the better and easier your final decision will be.

Consider a wellness plan. Another way to attract potential employees and keep current employees happy and healthier, in addition to potentially saving money down the road is through incorporating a wellness plan. Healthier employees mean fewer trips to the doctor. Consider benefits such as subsidized gym memberships, blood pressure checks, help for those who want to quit smoking, exercise classes and more.

Inquire about Insurers’ Patient Support Programs. Did you know that many large insurers offer patient support programs?  For example, United Healthcare offers members with diabetes an incredible diabetes management program where they work one-on-one with a member of their nursing staff. If you take advantage of programs such as these and the health of your employees improve, you could potentially be rewarded financially through lowered plan costs.

When you team up with an insurance advisor, you will be exposed to a wide variety of potential health benefit plans you can offer to your employees. Before settling on a group plan for your medical practice, it’s important to answer the following important questions pertaining to health coverage:

  1. Financially, what can your practice afford each month? Each year?

  2. Is your practice financially prepared to pay for employee benefits in full?

  3. Although some medical practices pay 100 percent of employee premiums, this is not an option for all practices. If you fall into the latter group, determine what percentage of contribution will still make your employees feel valued.

  4. What type of message will you send to your employees through your level of contribution?

  5. What types of health benefits and coverage are similar medical practices in your area offering to its employees?

Studies show appealing benefits packages with quality coverage increases employee loyalty and attracts top-level candidates in the future. With dozens of health benefit programs available, superior coverage for your medical practice and happier employees are not far from reach.

Physicians, their practice and employees all have distinct insurance needs, which is why it is crucial to work with an advisor who is familiar with health benefits for a medical practice. If you need help with designing a program that meets your needs and offers the best coverage for your budget, while showing your employees that you care about their health, feel free to get in touch with us today.

Topics: Life Insurance, Disability Insurance

Posted by the TMA Insurance Trust Team
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