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Employer health and the transition to value-based care

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A concern among employers in today’s healthcare environment is that their employees are not able to afford quality care. They want their employees healthy and realize that when healthcare costs are out of reach, employees simply won’t access the care they need.

Employers need healthy employees to help reduce their own costs, to maintain a quality level of productivity, and to reduce absenteeism. In general, the current transition to value-based care is welcome news to most employers, with its focus on quality care at the physician’s office and cost containment for both employer and employee.

Large employers indicate, according to a recent article in the Washington Post that “the cost of health-care plans will grow 5 percent next year, to an average cost of more than $14,000 per employee.” A survey conducted of 148 employers found that “employers will shoulder approximately 70 percent of those health costs, leaving employees on the hook for an average of $4,400.”

A new partnership between the ERISA Industry Committee (ERIC) and the Pacific Business Group on Health (PBGH), called the DRIVE Health Initiative, has launched a campaign to “decrease costs, improve quality and vitalize the economy through value-based care.” DRIVE, an acronym for Deliver Results, Innovation and Value for Everyone, has as its main goal, accelerating “value-based care by working with the government to reduce unproductive regulations and implement market-based purchasing strategies.”

Employers recognize that employees often do not have access to quality healthcare, because of the costs or because of logistics. Convenience can also be a key factor and so a growing number of employers are offering on-site health clinics as benefits for their employees. Value-based care provided at these on-site health centers can help entice employees to engage more in their own healthcare plan, resulting in improved outcomes for both the employee and the employer.