Employers Say More Cost for Employees Who Don't Manage Health

August 5, 2009 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - New survey data from United Benefit Advisors, LLC (UBA) suggests that over 44% of employers agree that individuals should pay more for health benefits if they do not make a reasonable effort to control their chronic conditions.

Only 18% believe that no cost differential should result from the employees lack of compliance with appropriate treatments of chronic conditions, according to a press release.

“The majority of employers clearly recognize the potential impact of employee health management programs on future plan costs. More than half of all employers continue to believe that financial incentives should be provided to individuals based on their effort to manage their own chronic conditions,” said William Stafford, Vice President, Member Services for UBA, in the press release.

The survey found that between 15% and 23% of employers currently provide employees with financial incentives to manage their health, use cost-effective providers, or plan to do so next year. Employee incentives to complete health risk appraisals increased by 130% compared with UBA’s 2006 report.

Approximately one-third of all employers said they would like to add such programs in the future.

The survey was conducted in February 2009 through a joint effort of nearly 140 independent advisory firms who comprise UBA.

The full survey results are revealed in the 2009 UBA Employer Benefit Perspectives survey report, which UBA says can provide employers with benchmarks that will allow them to compare attitudes and strategies regarding employer-provided benefits with those of their peers and competitors.

The report can be ordered from here .