Tennessee Health Insurance Tips For Employers

According to the 2011 survey conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation, there was a 118 percent increase in the average family premium for covered employees of large businesses and a 103 percent increase for small business firms noted over the past decade. The survey revealed that in Tennessee, only 51 percent of businesses offer health coverage to their employees. The main reason not all businesses are providing health benefits to their workers is because the increasing cost is too much to handle.

However, there are two great tips that employers can utilize to reduce their health care costs and bring down Tennessee health insurance premiums.

Health Savings Accounts And Health Reimbursement Arrangements For Employers

The first tip that employers can use is to look into Health Savings Accounts (HSA). Health Savings Accounts were first introduced to the market in 2004. To set up an HSA, you need a qualified high-deductible health plan. Individuals must have a deductible of at least $1,200 while family coverage must have a minimum deductible of $2,400. As for the cost of HSA plans, premiums have risen at a rate of one third to one half that of traditional Tennessee health insurance plans.

In a study conducted by United Benefit Advisors, in 2005 alone, more than 12,000 employer-provided health insurance plans were released. The study also pointed out that the cost of all health plans combined increased an average of 9.6 percent, while only a 3.4 percent rise was seen for HSA plans.

A similar survey was done by the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions the following year and results show that from 2004 until 2005, the cost of Health Savings Accounts rose by an average of 2.8 percent compared to a 7.3 percent increase for all health care plans combined.

Health Savings Account plans also extends its help to employees when it comes to out-of-pocket costs linked with the plans’ deductibles. Many employers are discovering that they are allowed to fund their employees’ HSA plans with the money saved on HSA plan premiums. The money your employer places in your savings account is forever yours whether you leave or lose your job. You have the option to withdraw your HSA dollars tax-free to pay for qualified health care expenses. You may even simply grow your HSA and use the funds when you retire.

The second tip for employers is Health Reimbursement Arrangements. This is not relatively known, but it can help increase tax savings. When you have an HRA, employers can reimburse you for medical care costs such as dental and vision services. TN health insurance premiums can also be reimbursed. With an HRA, more health care expenses can be deducted from your annual tax income than would otherwise be allowed.

When you reach a certain age, your health insurance needs take on a whole new definition. The coverage you purchased when you were a young adult is not adequate for your health care needs after age 50. For many older Australians, health problems develop that are a natural part of the aging process, while for others poor nutrition, lack of exercise, or simply a history of hard living can catch up with our bodies. Adopting a healthy lifestyle later in life is always a good idea, and obtaining good health care coverage is very important.

Every Australian can get basic health care through Medicare. But Medicare may not be enough for individuals over 50, since its coverage options are limited and the medical needs of seniors are almost always greater than those of younger people. For this reason, comparing health insurance plans is important when it comes to protecting yourself financially and medically in later life.

Seniors face the need for more prescription medications, more surgical procedures, and more ancillary services such as hearing aids, vision, and dental care. Medicare coverage alone limits your choice of hospitals that will admit you for treatment, and which physicians you can enlist for your examinations, surgical procedures, and any other medical needs you may have. Additionally, if your health insurance is limited to Medicare with no private policy in place, your coverage may not be adequate to cover all medications and treatments you may need; some medical services are not covered by Medicare at all.

Seniors who do not have a pension can apply for the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card before purchasing private health insurance. Australians over 50 with a fixed income who do not qualify for a pension can qualify for this card to help cover some prescription medication and medical services costs.

If you’re an individual over 50 who has a pension and are looking to enhance your health coverage, comparing private insurance plans is a great start to learning all you need to know about securing your health policy options. Although all private insurers offer options for improved care above your Medicare supplement, each fund offers its own plan structures, coverage options, and premium costs, so it pays to compare.

Whether you are already facing additional medical services related to an age-related injury or illness, or you are simply planning ahead and making sure your health insurance coverage is adequate as a prudent measure, comparing plans and purchasing a private insurance policy can provide financial security if extra costs arise from medical services that are not covered by Medicare alone.

Seniors with a preexisting condition may face a waiting period of up to 12 months before their private coverage can be used for treatment. It is important to compare private health policies and determine which have waiting periods that may not work for you. Remember, no medical insurer can refuse to provide you with coverage based on your age or any preexisting conditions.

Your private medical plan may cover services specific to seniors that are not covered by Medicare, including ambulance costs, home nursing care, Podiatry services, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, cataract surgery and glasses, and more.

Remember, the Australian government reimburses 30 percent of the cost of every private medical plan premium, a great incentive to make sure your health insurance coverage is adequate. And that percentage increases for seniors to 35 percent at age 65, and 40 percent at age 70, in order to make private coverage more affordable to aging citizens who are often living on a pension alone, with no other source of income. Those seniors who do have more income sources are still eligible for the same government reimbursement rates on private insurance premiums.