The world can be an uncertain place, and that’s why everyone wants that “safety vent” to fall back. In the Corporate world, every day, several new wellness ideas come into the market. It can be very easy to ignore prioritizing things like employee health policy in such a scenario.
Health coverage that employers arrange has become the standard foundation of wellness platforms. There are several options available for businesses to look after their employees’ health. They generally target an individual or a group.
But one thing is a certain reality: the demand for a wholesome health policy is a priority for many employees, especially in our post-pandemic world.
Wholesome health policy is a great tool for increasing retention, and lessening absenteeism.
So in this article, we will talk about employee health policy, its need, and how it impacts business growth. But first, let's start by understanding the basics.
What is an Employee Health Policy?
We live in a time where medical inflations are making the treatments quite an expensive situation. A sedentary lifestyle is continuously creating health issues for employees. The burden on the employers increases every day.
Employers are seeking for solutions to shoulder the weight of health costs. In such a reality, it has become a very important matter for employers to provide the ‘right’ health policies for their employees.
Health policies are the extensive coverage for medically incurred expenses owing to accidents, injury, or medical situations. Employees can avail such a policy with monthly or annual premium payments for a specified tenure.
If an insured employee meets with a medical situation during this period, the expenses incurred for treatment purposes are borne by the insurance provider.
Why Do Your Employees Need a Health Policy?
The simple answer is- Healthcare is really expensive. In countries like the United States, USD 3.5 trillion is spent annually on healthcare expenses. This rate is 12000% higher than what it was five decades back!
It’s the same everywhere worldwide; even low-cost countries from Southeast Asian region have found keeping healthcare expenses low a challenge. People worldwide are increasingly looking for insurance to find that peace of mind around their wellbeing.
That is why in today’s world, securing healthcare policy through an employer is highly valued by employees. A Clutch survey indicated that 55% of those employees said health coverage was the most important factor of their job satisfaction.
Millennials were more likely to choose flexible work and overtime perks over their health, even though they’re currently the generation who are likely to need it the most.
Since employees spend almost 50% of their time at their workplace, offering a balanced health program is vital.
An ideal health policy can-
- Improve overall productivity at work
- Reduce absenteeism
- Promote positive behavioral patterns
- Improve dietary habits among employees
A health policy provides a cushion of comfort to the employees about their health. They will be more relaxed, which will help the efficiency of their performance.
I have listed some of the obvious benefits of why it’s a no-brainer to arrange for the best health policy for your employees.
1. All it Needs is a Simple ‘Will.’
Many employee health benefit providers offer a range of health solutions for organizations. There is also plenty of intermediaries, like agents, brokers, etc. They help the organization through every step of delivering the process.
All it needs is a proper strategy from the management to invest some time, resources, and willingness. Some schemes can be simple and can be up and running in no time. For more complex platforms, expert advisors are needed who can guide the situation efficiently.
2. It Can Help Boost Productivity
According to a MetLife study, 60% of employers found that a robust health policy influences their staff’s productivity. People who have sorted out their health concerns can accomplish much more from their time at work. They are less likely to be distracted by their health concerns and can focus fully on their work in hand.
Implementing an employee health policy at work can reduce burnout. Preventative healthcare policies can make the staff aware and engaged by extending coverage to dependents and family.
3. Creates an Attractive, Healthy Corporate Culture
A wellness plan that incorporates fitness, nutrition, and mental health, should be considered for selecting a policy. It helps to create a healthy and positive workplace culture.
63% of employees consider a company’s health and wellness benefits while choosing a job. So, employers need to promote their health and wellness benefits on their company’s ‘careers’ page and highlight their wellness policies. This way, they can attract the best talent and enhance staff retention by providing an incentive that most employees want.
4. Getting Medical Attention Can Become Easier
Having a well-planned health policy will make it easier for employees to seek medical help and support quickly. The employees no longer need to lose sleep over deciding whom they should trust with their health. They can simply avail the benefits listed under the health policy provided by their employer.
It saves time, resources, and focus for the employees, which they can instead invest in their work and contribute to the success of the business.
What are the Benefits the Employees Seek From an Ideal Health Policy?
When it comes to selecting a health policy, the most favorable benefit the employees want is to enroll in a health policy that is universal. They want a policy which allows them to receive treatment from any doctor or hospital in the most smooth manner possible.
Therefore, before searching for an insurer for evaluating health policies, one must comprehend the points your business wants to be in line with to frame the insurance plan. The list may incorporate medical expenses, dental treatment, mental health, or maternity coverage and the option of covering dependents of the employees.
Of course, employees will have their setlist of health benefits and services they desire from the health policy. Why not? As they will be investing their hard-earned money in such policies, it is understandable that employees would prefer as many customized policies as possible. Following are some of the benefits most employees desire-
1. Covering for Hospitalization Expenses
It is one of the most basic and important requirements of any health policy. Any medical condition requiring urgent medical attention should be covered under standard health policy.
Treatment Against Critical Illness - Extending a substantial sum for covering all the critical diseases. All medical costs, inclusive of hospitalization, diagnosis, and medication, etc., are covered.
Accidental Coverage- In any unforeseen circumstances like accidents, this policy will come into force. It will cover all the costs from surgery, medicines, and any medical assistance required.
2. Covering for Mental Health
Mental Health is a big part of the overall wellness of an individual. In modern healthcare policies, mental health is finding its place, and employees want options to cover mental health issues.
The policy should cover counseling sessions, therapies etc. Rising rates of mental health issues globally facilitate employees to seek professional help for a well-rounded life.
Read our blog on: 10 Means to Raise Mental Health Awareness in the Workplace
3. Family Health Policy
Several policies cover the medical costs for the family members of the employees. Sometimes employees are under severe stress about their parents, wife, children, etc, and they feel having an insurance policy that takes care of such concerns completes their circle.
A policy that includes group health plans, which covers for illnesses of few of their kins is gaining interest in the market. The employees need to register their beneficiaries and review the project from time to time.
4. Maternity Insurance Policy
All pre and postnatal care expenses incurred during an employee’s pregnancy are covered under a maternity insurance policy. Such policies are very important for women employees to not be bothered about their maternity situation and focus on their work. It also covers the health care of the newborn for a designated period.
5. TOP-UP Health Policy
More often than not, the estimates of the treatment costs while availing of a health policy cover can increase over time even though the sum insured remains unchanged.
Under such circumstances, employees can choose to avail a top-up for their existing cover instead of purchasing a separate policy. This top-up policy helps increase the overall sum insured, which can be useful in case of any emergency in the future.
Suggested read: Top 10 Benefits Of Employee Wellness Programs
Points to Remember While Choosing a Health Policy
Before providing the health policy to the employees, every employer must make a list of criteria and services they wish to offer. They must ensure that services endorsed by the insurance company are aligned with the company culture and values.
The final policy must suit the needs of every employee and must meet the organization’s goals alike. Here are some points to consider for employers before extending the healthcare policy for employees:
1. Estimate the Cost
Estimate the overall cost of the premium for the endorsed policy. It must consider the net earning of the employees and must be attractive enough to entice employees to consider availing the services.
It should include the premium sum and deductibles, and co-insurance costs. Always go for the best plan in your budget, as choosing a low-cost plan can impress you for a while, but services of such cheap policies can be disappointing later. Don’t just consider a policy only on cost, but look for those features that could make it valuable.
2. Wholesome Coverage
Medical inflation is at its peak nowadays, and the trend is likely to continue in the future. People find it unaffordable to visit doctors frequently for general consultations and medication.
However, it is crucial to find a health policy to deal with their medical expenses hassle-free. Every year during renewal, employees should have the option to increase the amount insured as per the inflation rate.
3. Proper Evaluation
When it comes to ensuring health, the decision should come after a proper evaluation. This comprises a careful assessment of all the available options from different health insurance plans. Therefore, it is vital to examine the best possible deals such as discounts, rewards, and other benefits offered by a program.
In addition to this, the availability of network hospitals, cashless treatment facilities, and additional costs, etc., should be taken into account. Doing this will assist you in getting value for investing money in the policy.
An inclusive health policy for employees has been a great tool for companies to impress their employees. It not just brings health and comfort for them but also results in a lot of success and cost savings for the organization in the long run. Employers are looking for ways to shoulder the health burden of their employees more systematically, and investing in bringing about a good health policy is a part of it.
Future Health policies are expected to be shaped by AI-based tools. It will streamline the entire process. Apart from that, AI will improve fraud detection, enhance health policy, and provide a better experience.