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Posts made in March, 2018


Your health insurance plan does more than just protect your family’s health. It also protects your budget, by helping you manage expenses. But there are several ways to wring a bit more value from your plan… Make sure you have the right plan. You wouldn’t use the wrong tools to accomplish a particular task, so why use the wrong health insurance plan to protect yourself and loved ones? It’s tempting to automatically re-enroll in your current plan each year, because it’s one less task to tackle. But really, you should be re-evaluating your family’s needs each year, and comparing those needs to your plan’s provisions. Understand your plan. Upon enrollment, your health insurance company will send you a packet of information. Take the time to review this information, and hang onto it for later reference. If you’ve met your deductible, take advantage. If, and when, you meet your deductible for the year, go ahead and schedule other screenings or procedures that you might have postponed earlier. You’ll be getting them at reduced cost now. Use in-network providers whenever possible. Before utilizing any medical facility or doctor, check with your insurance company to be sure they’re in-network. Only use out-of-network providers when absolutely necessary. Try mail-order prescription services. Check with your insurance provider to see if they cover mail-order prescription services. You can save money by ordering a 90-day supply of your prescriptions, rather than standing in line at a local pharmacy each month. Consult with a medical billing advocate. Hospitals can, and do, make errors in billing. Sometimes those errors amount to thousands of dollars! When you encounter high out-of-pocket costs, consult with a medical billing advocate. Consultation is usually free, if your bill turns out to be correct. If the advocate succeeds in reducing your bill, their fee is usually about one-third to one-half of the amount saved. Your insurance company might even offer this advocacy service. Stay in touch. Health insurance companies sometimes add special services and perks to their roster of offerings. Read any emails or snail mail they send you, and check their website frequently for updates on free screenings, wellness programs, handy apps, and...

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If you choose to offer your employees a dental care plan, providing them with a valuable health benefit is probably your primary motivation. However, when your employees take advantage of those plans, particularly preventive dental care, you also reap the benefits. According to a study by Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, companies that encourage employees to use preventive dental care can slash the cost of group policies for their employees. The study analyzed claims data from 2011 to 2017, and divided employers into two groups: high-preventive-utilization and low-preventive-utilization. In other words, they compared the rates at which preventive dental care was accessed by workers, between different companies. Over the six-year period, the high-preventive-utilization group spent 39 percent more on preventive care, but 86 percent less on major and restorative dental services. This translated into a 16 percent savings on dental care, overall, as compared to the low-preventive-utilization group. Because more than 90 percent of systemic diseases present oral signs and symptoms, routine preventive dental care also aids in early detection of many serious (non-dental) medical conditions. Therefore, accessing their preventive dental care benefits might also help your employees detect health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease. Routine dental care can even contribute to a healthy pregnancy. So, preventive dental care might also help to reduce overall expenditures on medical care, as well as the cost of sick leave and other workplace issues related to employee health. How can you urge your employees to utilize their preventive dental benefits? First, it is important for you to thoroughly understand your dental health package. Then, you can more effectively communicate those benefits to workers, and offer incentives to encourage their use. We’re happy to help you understand your dental health policy, so that you and your employees can reap the full benefits of it. Just give us a call and we will discuss your group...

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