Keys to Engaging Members and Lowering Cost of Care

Keys to Engaging Members and Lowering Cost of Care
May 23, 2024 Sue Riordan
Keys to engaging members and lowering cost of care

In 2024, offering health care benefits is second nature to most companies. But getting employees to engage with these benefits can be a challenging task. For many employers, it’s a major hurdle. That’s why knowing the keys to engaging members and lowering cost of care is so important.

According to the 2024 Large Employer Survey from Business Group on Health (BGH), employers want to do a better job with this. In this survey, 87 percent of employers said “supporting employees and plan members so they can make informed health care decisions” was a top priority1.

And this trend couldn’t come at a more ideal time. With costs—particularly medical costs—soaring to all-time highs, there’s no better time to address ways to lower those costs, for employees and plan sponsors alike. Getting employees actively involved in improving their own health outcomes is an excellent way to do that.

There’s also an urgency to do so.

What’s so important about right now?

One thing we know is medical inflation has been outpacing regular inflation. Plus, health care costs are projected to climb six percent—a higher than historical rate—for the remainder of this year. Combined with regular inflation taking a toll, it’s bringing the question of affordability very near its boiling point. As a result, plan sponsors and members need to find ways to prioritize things like quality of care, outcomes, prevention and cost transparency.

Plus, we also know employees who are least engaged in their health incur costs that trend much higher. On average, costs can be up to 21 percent higher compared to employees who actively engage in managing their health care2.

So, creating better engagement drives better outcomes—and that, in turn, lowers costs of care. Doing this now can bring some much needed relief. And the effects can benefit just about everyone.

How to make a difference

First, there are some things plan sponsors should be aware of when it comes to enticing members, such as:

    • Access and affordability drive member choices.
    • Benefits should align with optimized point solutions.
    • Members want frictionless experiences.
    • Every touchpoint counts.
    • Education is important.
    • A smart communication plan keeps benefits top of mind.
Where should you start?

We’ve got a solution in sight. Our new program, OnPoint Solutions, will be rolling out later this year. This new offering will help take the guesswork out of getting members on track and engaged, while driving costs down.

Through Meritain Health OnPoint Solutions, expect to see key solutions that address frequent cost drivers, while simplifying access and data. We’ll be pooling from what we already offer in areas such as telehealth, whole health, condition support, musculoskeletal care, high-cost drug management, low-cost care and family-building and menopause support.

We’ll also be using data in new ways to assess risk, monitor benchmarks, make recommendations and give customers more power to influence results.

Read more about the timing of this program in our newsroom.

Also, look for articles in the coming weeks about various point solutions available through Meritain Health®. Each of these help with access to care, cost and data transparency, engagement and much more.