Often when we think about reducing costs we think about cutting down on what we are purchasing. When it comes to benefits plans this could mean adding plan maximums or reducing coverage. Before you make any changes to your benefits plan please consider these other actions that can be taken to reduce the cost of your plan.
If you have been experiencing increases on your Extended Health and Dental at renewal time you will have heard about how your claims experience impacts your rates. Encouraging employees to consider the following when making decisions about their health and dental expenses, can help cut down on claims experience without cutting down on benefits.
- Purchase maintenance drugs in bulk when possible and allowed by your plan. This saves on dispensing fees at the pharmacy. The dispensing fee per prescription charged by pharmacies is about $10 if it’s possible to have the prescription filled with one dispensing fee instead of two $10 are saved, this is per prescription. Over a year $10 per prescription can be significant.
- Shop around for lower dispensing fees. Dispensing fees can vary from pharmacy to pharmacy, Costco offers the lowest dispensing fee of $4.49 compared to most other Pharmacies charging over $9 with some as high as $14.
- See more than one Dentist. When you have an expensive procedure coming up it’s a good idea to see more than one Dentist and have predeterminations submitted by more than one Dentist to compare prices. As most major dental treatments are only partially covered by the plan the employee could be saving their out of pocket expenses as well.
- Use the Employee Assistance Program if your plan includes one. Typically these programs will provide initial counselling services at no cost. Help employees be more proactive with their health. A proactive approach can prevent more serious health issues that could require more costly treatments and missed work.
These simple measures can help lower the dollar amount in claims being paid under your plan. Lower claims help control premium rates from increasing at renewal. If you are interested in learning other ways to lower the costs of your extended health and dental benefits plan, please contact us today.