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Cutting insurance costs with employee reward programs

Health insurance can be a major expense for any company and, new research shows it can be challenging to successfully shop for a new plan.

Health insurance can be a major expense for any company, and new research shows it can be challenging to successfully shop for a new plan.

HealthPocket Inc conducted a study of over 10,000 health insurance plans for individuals and families under the age of 65. It found that up to 80 percent of the companies raise premiums over the quoted price. This can make it difficult to accurately predict insurance costs.

"Consumers cannot objectively compare health insurance premiums prior to application because insurers base their initial rates on the healthiest applicants, and for many these rates would not apply," Kev Coleman, head of research and data at HealthPocket, said in a statement. "When insurers wait until an application is reviewed to reveal the true monthly premium, it is impossible for consumers to know what health insurance plan is the least expensive for their circumstances."

To save money, most people purchase employment through their employer. This gives them access to reduced rates based on a group plan that has lower risk. To keep costs down, employers routinely shop for new plans, but a better strategy may be to help workers reduce their risk of developing health problems. Employee reward programs can be used to develop a health-conscious culture that could lower insurance costs for both employees and their company.

Recognizing workers who have lost weight, quit smoking or joined a gym can inspire other workers to take their health more seriously. This can help companies and its employees secure the lowest premium by reducing claims. Because staff members are supported in their efforts, they are more likely to see results, which may inspire others and build a healthier work environment.

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