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Infographic: Facing rising health care costs, U.S. employers focus on affordability and wellbeing

Insights from our 2021 Best Practices in Health Care Survey

Health and Benefits|Wellbeing
N/A

October 6, 2021

U.S. employers are taking action to enhance employee wellbeing and provide access to high-quality, affordable health care as costs continue to rise.
U.S. employers prioritize providing affordable health programs and boosting employee well being - description below

Panel 1: Combined medical and pharmacy benefit expense is expected to rise by 5.2% in 2022

2018 and 2019: 3.5% - trend after planned design changes, 4.4% - trend before planned design changes; 2019 and 2020: 2.1% - trend after plan design changes, 3% - trend before plan design changes; 2020 and 2021 (projected): 5.5% - trend after plan design changes, 6% - trend before planned design changes; 2021 and 2022 (projected): 5.2% - trend after plan design changes, 5.4% - trend before planned design changes

Average employer cost per employee: 2020 - $12,501; 2021 - $13,360 (expected). Average employee contributions for premiums: 2020 - $3,269, 2021 - $3,331 (expected).

Panel 2: Employers top priorities over the next two years: Achieve affordable and sustainable costs for organization (90%); achieve affordable health program costs for employees, especially lower-wage employees (86%); enhance employee well-being (85%); identify programs that support diversity equity and inclusion goals and social determinants of health (78%).

Panel 3: Taking action to address affordability and financial management issues

Contributions and premiums: Structure employee contributions based on pay levels or job grades (today – 22%, planning or considering* – 8%). Use working spousal surcharges when additional employer coverage is available (today – 25%, planning or considering* – 9%)

Network and provider strategies: Offer a narrow network of higherquality and/or lower-cost providers (today – 21%, planning or considering* – 30%). Use centers of excellence within health plans (today – 48%, planning or considering* – 23%). Offer access to concierge services with integrated care management programs (today – 31%, planning or considering* – 25%). Offer coverage for tele-behavioral health services (today – 89%, planning or considering* – 7%).

*In next two years

Panel 4: Measures to improve the employee experience around health and wellbeing

45% integrate well being vendors into the overall employee experience, +37% planning or considering. 52% enhanced the enrollment experience, +34% planning or considering. 49% add more choices in all benefits, +23% planning or considering. 50% collect feedback of benefit preferences from employees +34% planning or considering.

*In next two years

Panel 5: Next steps and considerations

What changes to benefits designs and employee cost sharing would improve the affordability of health programs for your workforce and specifically for lower-wage employees?

Are you leveraging network and provider strategies that offer employees access to high-quality, affordable care?

What steps are you taking to redesign wellbeing programs to have a meaningful impact on employees and their families?

Are you ready to take action to improve the employee experience by enhancing the enrollment experience, improving choice and better integrating wellbeing vendors?

Related content tags, list of links Infographic Health and Benefits Wellbeing United States

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