In an effort to provide more value and benefits to our membership, the Clayton Chamber of Commerce is endorsing Missouri Chamber Care, a health insurance alternative that is gaining interest because of its ability to control health insurance costs for small employers. We are pleased to be able to provide access to such an important benefit that could dramatically increase an employer's ability to afford health insurance.
The centerpiece of Missouri Chamber Care is its health reimbursement account or HRA, an account funded by an employer to cover first-dollar medical costs for employees. This program combines a traditional, high-deductible health insurance plan with an HRA. The idea is that employers' savings from switching to a high-deductible plan will more than offset the cost of setting up and funding HRA accounts.
The approach is showing dividends for many employers, according to early statistics from Missouri Chamber Care's program manager. Ninety-seven percent of the employers who have changed to a high deductible plan with an HRA have spent less than 50 percent of their HRA balances. In fact, the highest level reached by any of the companies covered by this group was 87 percent.
At the same time, this approach makes employees more aware of and accountable for health care spending, and therefore, more cost-conscious. And ultimately, this also will be a cost saver for the employer.
By utilizing the Missouri Chamber Care system, employers can:
- Control annual fixed costs by lowering premiums an average of 40 percent
- Pay for first-dollar claims on an "as incurred" basis, rather than in advance
- Potentially provide benefits not normally included in plan designs due to cost savings.
*If you are interested in Missouri Chamber Care, please contact Ellen Gale at 314-726-0068.