NOVEMBER 16TH, 2021
What would you do if faced with a large, unexpected healthcare expense? Would you be able to pay for it from your savings? Would you have to borrow money? Or would you put it on a credit card and hope to pay it off as quickly as possible?
Many Americans have experienced this difficult choice between physical and financial health. About a quarter of Americans have admitted to deferring or delaying medical care due to an inability to pay. That’s unacceptable.
Quite a few employers have started to include health savings accounts (HSAs) as a component of their health plans. Some even offer to contribute — or match employee contributions — as an extra incentive to take advantage of this benefit. Contributing to an HSA should theoretically make it easier for employees to handle their out-of-pocket medical expenses, including deductibles.
In a perfect world, those same workers wouldn’t have to use this account to cover health-related expenses; they could instead contribute funds to their HSAs, invest that money over time, and then benefit from the growth.
For workers who can follow that formula, HSAs make it possible to boost their financial wellness while building long-term wealth. But for most folks who have HSAs, this is not the case. Most account holders — more than 80% — are not in a financial position to contribute the maximum amount to their HSA. And even if they manage to set aside money, they don’t always have the ability to let those funds accumulate over time.
In reality, most people don’t have enough money in their HSAs to cover their deductibles in a given year: Roughly 78% of people on high-deductible health plans report an HSA balance that’s smaller than their deductible.
Most employers view HSAs as a tool to help employees afford their medical expenses and build financial wellness over time. Perhaps you even used this argument to motivate your team members to opt for an HDHP. But for most Americans, the math just doesn’t add up.
Luckily, there is another option: A health payment account designed to complement your existing health plan. For instance, Paytient offers a way for employers to provide their employees with greater access to the healthcare they need — all at a surprisingly affordable cost.
Paytient does this by giving employees access to funds (on a Visa debit card) that can be used to cover medical, dental, vision, pharmacy, and even veterinary expenses. Each time an employee uses their Paytient card, we fund the transaction. Employees then choose how to pay it off in a way that works for their budget and financial health — whether that’s through payroll deductions, a bank account, or an HSA/FSA account — all with 0% APR if paid within 12 months.
Offering Paytient as a benefit to your employees enables them to live healthier lives by accessing care earlier without financial harm. It also helps reduce the cost of healthcare for employees and employers alike. When employees get the care they need, they are less likely to be responsible for the types of large claims that can increase premiums and cost-sharing for everyone.
Companies that offer Paytient to complement their existing health plans reduce their financial risk, improve collections for healthcare providers, and allow employees to get the care they need when they need it — a rare win-win-win in the world of healthcare.
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