Welcome to the HealthKeys Connection Blog!!

We are providing informative content about the future of wellness and its intersection with population based Health Risk Management programs.  Please review the links below as we continue to post more blogs and provide comments, questions or challenges.  If you want to further information, please join our mailing list at:    contact-us 

 

FALL 2014  "NEW RULES AND TOOLS"

New Rules and Tools allow Employers to manage their healthcare risk through the use of HealthKeys programs.

The IRS guidelines for the Affordability rule have changed to 9.56% for 2015. 

The affordability rule is a factor when you are looking at incentives or surcharges.  See the IRS information. rp-14-37

 

JULY 2014  "INCENTIVES OR SURCHARGES?"

Many questions are being asked by employers: Incentives or Surcharges? Activities or Outcomes Based?

THE MOUNTAIN SEEMS TOUGH TO CLIMB DOESN’T IT?

INCENTIVES OR SURCHARGES?When to use incentives (or surcharges)?  Should they be used to incent activities such as a walking program or an outcome such as a Body Mass Index of less than 30?

Wellness companies have been incenting activities for years, with shall we say, mixed results.  Since the rules regarding outcomes based incentives have been enhanced through PPACA, unique administrative capabilities are essential to maintain compliance.  Savvy employers and benefit consultants that would like to take advantage of the new rules are considering alternatives to traditional wellness programs.  Health Risk Management, which incorporates risk management techniques and an outcomes based wellness strategy, is that alternative. Although the C-suite loves the idea of employee accountability that is produced with outcomes based incentives, HR departments are concerned about employee acceptance of such an idea.  Here are a few helpful tips to get senior level executives on the same mountain top:

The attached provides a third party look at the use of cash incentives; http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/can-cash-incentives-keep-people-healthy/ Employers continue to look for ways to manage the health risk within their employee population, in order to minimize medical claims, and control costs. What is your plan to control medical costs?  We will help develop a customized plan for you to get on top of the mountain. Give us a call at 1-888-870-5397.

 

JUNE 2014 "What is HEALTH RISK MANAGEMENT"?

Risk Management is a concept borrowed from the property and casualty insurance industry where resources are directed toward identifying and managing a specific risk. HealthKeys measures outcomes rather than merely managing wellness activities. Our Health Risk Management program combines the following:

Incentives/surcharges are integrated with employee contributions to gain participant’s attention and financially motivate them towards better outcomes. Our independent and data-centric approach is a differentiator than our competition.

You control the Data

HealthKeys allows you to control the data.

May 2014 "What is next for worksite wellness"?

Wellness has come to be defined differently by various organizations. Chiropractors, massage therapists, fitness gurus, nutritionists, life coaches (and the list goes on) are all in the wellness business. When it comes to worksite wellness however we tend to think of employer sponsored activities like:

These types of activities were designed to help employees learn something about themselves and provide some structure to kick start a healthy culture at the worksite. The goal was to have a positive impact on an employer’s medical claims. Employees took advantage of the programs but participation was low so employers began to put pressure on wellness organizations to calculate a Return on Investment (ROI). With self-reported data, the challenge was to calculate an ROI without hard data. The wellness organizations used the participation in the program as a metric to calculate ROI. The “fuzzy” math put wellness companies on the defensive as it was difficult to confirm ROI, and the recent Rand Report on Wellness calculated a very minimal return on investment for employers. Many employers were frustrated that their effort was not providing any positive return. While it appears that traditional wellness companies are struggling with these conclusions and trying to position themselves as another employee benefit, like an Employee Assistance Plan, there are new companies that are able to support the employers need for using data and metrics to analyze success and manage the health risk within their population. How about a health risk management program that includes an outcome based component and support for the individual participants that is compliant with the latest wellness rules?