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Spelling It Out: Paytient vs. HRAs

Providing employee healthcare benefits comes with a lot of responsibility—and acronyms, for that matter. In the final installment of this 3-part series, we'll compare the features of a health reimbursement arrangement (HRA) to those offered by Paytient, then discuss how they each help employers present their people with more flexible healthcare payment opportunities.

Medical Bills

The best employees strive to bring their most productive selves to work every day with no excuses. Unfortunately, healthcare issues of all kinds get in the way of that, and it’s on employers to provide the support — financial and otherwise — their employees need to access and afford healthcare. 

Health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) are one of the ways employers back their employees and help them seek accessible treatment options at affordable costs without incurring the expense of offering a traditional health insurance plan. 

What Is an HRA?

HRAs are a nother tool in the employer health benefit arsenal that’s an option when a traditional group health plan isn’t practical. Employers own and fund HRAs, making funds available to pay for employee care or a health plan the employee purchases through the individual health plan marketplace. Employers can contribute as much as they want to an individual based on their workplace classification. 

So, for example, if an employer relies on a mix of full-time and part-time employees, that employer reserves the right to allocate different HRA amounts to each kind of worker. For example, an organization might determine that in order to attract and retain full-time employees it needs to offer a bigger HRA allocation than it offers to part-time employees. . 

In addition to determining the amount made available to each employee, employers can determine what is to be done with unused money, and they have the final say on whether any of those funds roll over to the next financial year. 

In short, HRAs provide a similar employer investment in employee health as providing traditional health insurance. That said, employees may still face some out of pocket costs, and they’ll need to be prepared with a way to cover those costs if the employer wants to see employees actively seek care to stay healthy and productive at work.

How Does Paytient Work Alongside HRAs?

Paytient puts interest-free funds in employees’ wallets that they can use anytime to cover out of pocket costs for which they are responsible alongside their HRA-funded coverage. This ensures they seek care proactively, which promotes early diagnosis and less invasive, less expensive treatment options. In the long term, this lowers the risk of high cost claims hitting the HRA and increasing costs in future years.  

 For anyone with a health plan deductible or out of pocket responsibility, Paytient works to remove financial barriers to care in a way that improves the health and productivity of the workforce while lowering healthcare costs over the long term. With funds available day one, employees have confidence they’ll be able to access care when they need it, and employers appreciate not having to fund that care with cash contributions. Employers also appreciate that they are not at risk for unpaid balances on Paytient cards. 

Together the HRA plus Paytient can lower costs while improving employee health and wellbeing.

Did you miss our blog on HSAs? Click here

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