Benefitfocus Annual State of Employee Benefits Finds Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) Gaining Traction
"This year's report documents the continued shift by employers to consumer-driven health care plan designs," said Benefitfocus Co-founder and CEO
Data show that PPO deductibles increased and are approaching the
The report identified five themes for the 2017 plan year:
- Employees have more choice in health care benefits.
High-deductible health plans (HDHPs) now appear in three out of every five large employer benefit offerings, but PPO plans remain the most popular choice for employees.
- Health plan participation fluctuates with age and wage.
Employees over the age of 36 who select an HDHP have up to 17 percent higher salaries on average compared to those selecting a PPO.
- Employee costs are up significantly, regardless of health plan.
Average out-of-pocket maximums for PPOs increased by double-digits from 2016 to 2017, while for HDHPs they increased approximately 5 percent.
- Employees, especially young ones, are saving more.
Employee contributions to health savings accounts (HSAs) and flexible spending accounts (FSAs) are up, with millennials dramatically increasing their contributions.
- Employers are increasingly embracing voluntary benefits.
Nearly half of large employers on the Benefitfocus Platform now offer at least one voluntary income protection benefit (accident, critical illness or hospital indemnity insurance), and the number of employers offering all three products nearly doubled compared to 2016.
"Employers continue to offer more choice in benefits - both with HDHPs and voluntary benefits - to help employees personalize their benefits to best suit their unique health and financial needs," said Jenkins. "Based on the data, it's clear that individuals on the Benefitfocus Platform are becoming savvier benefit consumers, carefully considering their financial and health situation with each plan. As employers continue to shift additional financial responsibility for health care to their workforce, they must invest in leading technology, resources and tools that guide employees to better informed decisions."
For more findings, download the full Benefitfocus State of Employee Benefits 2017 report.
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