As health care costs continue to rise, employers are offering financial incentives to encourage workers to embrace high-deductible insurance plans — a move companies hope will bring significant savings by lowering premiums, AJC writer Misty Williams reports.
At Atlanta Medical Center, 51 percent of workers are now in a high-deductible health savings plan, versus 15 percent in 2010, Williams writes.
The hospital was trying to transition its 1,100 employees who elect benefits into a high-deductible plan, so it boosted its contributions to employee health savings accounts by hundreds of extra dollars per account, Williams reports.
Instead of paying an insurance company for care they may or may not use, employees can sock away tax-free money in a health savings account to pay for future medical expenses, said Troy Bond, the hospital’s chief human resources officer.
While many consumers save money under the plans, however, meeting high deductibles — which often vary from $1,000 to $5,000 — can create sticker shock for some people, especially low-income families, benefits experts say.
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