Open enrollment is the only time employees can enroll in a health insurance plan or make changes to their current benefit elections, unless a specified life event occurs (marriage, childbirth, etc.). If an employee misses their opportunity to participate in open enrollment, they will have to wait until the following year to make changes or enroll.
Tips for an easier open enrollment as an employee
- If you had a plan last year, review it and assess your needs. If possible, look at your claims or expenses throughout the year. Did your plan meet your needs? Is it in your best interest to renew your plan or choose another one?
- Make sure you know what doctors and prescriptions are considered in-network under your plan.
- Set a budget for yourself and determine what you’re willing to spend.
- Consider all plan options before you decide what works best for you.
- Provide feedback to your employer. If your employer distributes a survey asking what benefits or improvements you’d like to see, take it. Feedback gives you a better chance at the coverage you desire.
- If offered, attend education sessions or meetings to review coverage options and changes. Do your research ahead of time and come prepared with questions so you can make an informed
Tip for an easier open enrollment as an employer
- Reevaluate your employee’s needs. Review any changes (i.e., health diagnoses, usage of benefit offerings, addition of dependents) and determine if they will affect healthcare needs in the upcoming year.
- Refresh open enrollment resources. Give up-to-date information and prepare for frequently asked questions.
- Notify employees if there will be changes to the plan’s network or preferred healthcare providers so they can better prepare for upcoming appointments.
- Consider an HSA or FSA. These accounts grant employees the ability to best utilize payroll dollars and save money.
Collaboration, open communication, and a strong library of resources are all part of conducting a smooth enrollment period. Being informed and staying engaged allow for educated decision making and better overall well-being.
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