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By: Alicia Link

The idea of "Managed Competition" for health benefits is not a new one. In fact, this idea has been around for some time. Managed Competition is an employer-based strategy offering multiple healthcare benefit options to employees. This places the responsibility of choice on employees rather than employer. Employees select the best benefit options, as well as cost, based on individual needs. However, true competition exists when each benefit plan provides a different healthcare delivery system. For example, three health insurance carriers offering the same or similar delivery systems would be competing in price, not value.

It is important that employers offer a variety of healthcare plans with different delivery systems. Equally important, employers should provide employees with information on all healthcare offerings. Information on the delivery system, type of plan, quality outcomes, and cost are key components. A workforce well educated in benefit plan options is better able to make a selection based on health care needs and household budget.

Determining premium contributions for employees can be challenging. The easiest way is to take the least expensive plan offered and use those rates to establish employer contribution. For higher priced plans, the employees pay the difference in premiums. A more sophisticated approach is to incorporate other factors into the equation such as quality outcomes and customer satisfaction.

Alicia Link
Communications Manager
616.949.2410 x145

Grand Valley Health Plan
829 Forest Hill Ave. SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49546

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