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Access to Affordable Healthcare

The Key Partnership That Makes Employer-Provided Health Coverage Work

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Matt Eyles

President and CEO, America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP)

For more than 180 million Americans, access to healthcare and coverage comes from a partnership between employers and health insurance providers — a partnership that works.

That isn’t just because the average employer pays more than 70 percent of the cost of each employee’s coverage. This partnership works because it gives employees important protections and peace of mind knowing that broken bones won’t break the bank.

It’s no wonder that employer-provided coverage (EPC) is popular — a 2018 poll revealed more than 70 percent of Americans are satisfied with the coverage offered by their employers.

Affordable access

Effective plans offered through EPC cover preventive care and make extra benefits available for vision and dental health. This 360-degree approach to health coverage gives Americans affordable, comprehensive access to care. This system also empowers employees to improve their health while ensuring financial security for themselves and their loved ones by incentivizing wellness.

Another emerging healthcare delivery source available in some EPC plans — telemedicine —  isn’t just helpful for patients on the go; it is critical for vulnerable populations, such as people with disabilities and in rural communities far from medical centers.

This technology brings the doctor to the patient from the comfort of their computer or smartphone, minimizing how much time the patient has to spend in hospitals and virtually reducing the distance between patients and doctors. Between 2015 and 2018, the share of large employer plans covering telemedicine rose from 27 percent to nearly 75 percent.

Consumer choice

Americans have more choice and control over their coverage and care than any other country in the world. In fact, around 70 percent of covered employees at large companies have more than one health plan to choose from.

When evaluating which health plan to select, employees should look for options that provide the right amount of coverage for a price that fits their budget. One effective way to achieve this is by utilizing health savings accounts (HSAs) — a key function of many EPC plans.

Approximately 22 million Americans have HSAs, which allow them to set aside money on a pre-tax basis for qualified medical expenses. This gives them more control and better flexibility to invest their healthcare dollars in ways that best fit their personal needs.

Health insurance providers are constantly working to improve the healthcare system. EPC is a critical part of what’s working today and what we must build upon for tomorrow.

Matt Eyles, President and CEO, America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), [email protected]

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