The Definition of Insanity
It’s several months before your next health insurance renewal and you’re thinking about talking to the other regional & national brokers to see if any of them can help you reign in a top three expense that continues to increase year over year.
Your team works spends precious time compiling all of the relevant information as additional requests filter in and the clock ticks down to your renewal date. Shortly thereafter you endure hours and hours of finalist presentations with beautifully bound booklets, impressive benchmarking graphs, and a list of the services available from the firms vying for your business.
If that’s not enough to force a change they will send in their “Closing Team” made up of credentialed subject matter experts from compliance to underwriters who you will rarely, if ever, see should you select their firm. You may make a change and the first year may seem like things are improving but soon after you’ll be back to the drawing board because your costs are still increasing at an unsustainable rate.
Insurance Isn’t Rocket Science
What broker consultants keep secret is that if you provide 10 firms with the same data and ask them to obtain proposals from the market, all 10 will return with the exact same proposals. There’s no difference between the multinational, publicly traded brokerage and your neighbor’s cousin who works out of his house.
Enrollment kits, subject matter experts, on staff legal counsel, underwriters, compliance, wellness program, data analytics, and all of the other magic fairy dust you’ve been presented have led to two things: Increased stock prices for the consulting firms and increased premiums for you and your employees.
The Game is Rigged
Health insurance companies, their subsidiaries and their third party administrators directly benefit when insurance premiums increase. You may think that by changing carriers or funding mechanisms, you can solve the problem. This allows you increased transparency into your claim data but doesn’t change the ecosystem has driven the cost of claims up year after year after year.
Have you secured your pharmacy rebates? Great! Guess what happens now: Your Pharmacy Benefit Manager is reclassifying their kickback compensation as marketing or distribution fees. Even though you may be able to carve out your Pharmacy Benefit Manager with your current administrator, it will come with a hefty setup fee and ongoing “integration costs.”