How to Read Your Health Insurance Explanation of Benefits Statement

People generally know less than they think they do when it comes to understanding their health benefits — which can lead to problems down the road. According to the American Institutes for Research, 3 out of 4 people said they felt confident that they knew how to use their health insurance. But only 1 out of 5 could accurately calculate their out-of-pocket costs. This lack of knowledge can hurt when the explanation of benefits (EOB) shows up in the mail. The EOB is a form that identifies the treatment or services you were provided and what amount your insurance will pay, says Erin Singleton, chief of mission delivery at the Patient Advocate Foundation, a nonprofit that provides professional case management services to people with chronic, life-threatening and debilitating illnesses. The EOB often says “This is not a bill” in large letters, and then has a chart or balance sheet detailing …

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Create a Bike-to-Work Program That Works

Biking to work is the fastest-growing mode of commuting, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The bureau found that the number of people who bike to work increased about 60% from 2000 to the 2008-2012 period. Mark Martin of Baton Rouge is 1 of those commuters. “I haven’t owned a motor vehicle for 25 years,” Martin says. He says he started biking regularly about 14 years ago; then he started a bicycle advocacy organization, now known as Bike Baton Rouge. “I commute daily to work, and to pretty much everything else I do,” Martin says. “The shortest is a little over 3 miles, the longest a little over 11 miles.” Biking to work can bring a lot of benefits to employers and employees alike. If you want to create an effective bike-to-work program, start with these tips. Tout the Benefits Educate employees about the advantages of biking to work. “First of all, …

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This Workplace Epidemic Is Costing Billions

In today’s world, many workers are worn down and some completely wiped out due to inadequate rest and sleep. Make sure your workplace wellness program addresses this issue or you may find that employees aren’t the only ones drained. It’s estimated that lack of sleep costs U.S. companies $63 billion in lost productivity each year. If Your Team Is Too Tired, It Could Mean Trouble For Everyone Nearly seven in 10 U.S. workers said they work while tired, with nearly one-third (31%) saying they do so very often, according to this 2016 survey. Survey respondents indicated their drowsiness led to: Being easily distracted (52%) Procrastinating more (47%) Being grumpy (38%) Making more mistakes (29%) Some of the admitted big-ticket blunders included: Making a $20,000 mistake on a purchase order. Deleting a project that took 1,000 hours to complete. Missing a decimal point on an estimated payment and the client overpaying by …

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Focusing on Employees’ Personal Financial Well-Being Pays Off

Personal finances can have a huge impact on your employees’ overall well-being. When you care about your employees and your organization, it’s a no-brainer — you make sure you’re including financial well-being in all workplace well-being efforts. According to PwC’s 2017 Employee Financial Wellness Survey, financial stress is costing companies. 53% of all employees are stressed about their finances. Nearly 1/3 of all employees are distracted by personal financial issues while at work. Almost 1/2 of them spend 3 hours or more each week handling personal finances at work. Those who are stressed about finances miss work on account of their personal financial issues and often cite health issues caused by financial stress. “These findings are concerning and potentially significant for companies looking to evaluate the return on investment of a financial wellness program,” wrote Kent E. Allison, a PwC Partner and National Practice Leader. But, let’s be honest, there is more at …

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The 6 Most Common Benefits Mistakes Long-Term Employees Make

If you’ve been with a company for a long time, it’s easy to get comfortable with your position there. This goes for your employee benefits, as well: You might fall into a routine and not realize the many options your employer offers that fit you better than your current coverage. Don’t miss out by making these benefits mistakes. 1. Ignoring Communications HR sends out all sorts of announcements about employee benefits — are you listening? If you’re not paying attention to employee communications, you could miss enrollment deadlines or valuable new benefits that you didn’t know you had. Chris Lokken, an employee benefits consultant with Johnson Insurance, says he often asks employees how many took advantage of the regular free eye exam their health insurance often covers. “Usually I get 3 or 4 hands to go up, and 5 or 10 people see me after the meeting and ask me …

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