Most would agree with the common adage that you get what you pay for, but that’s not the case when it comes to paying for healthcare in America. U.S. spending per capita is up to four times higher than other wealthy countries and yet shockingly, we have the absolute lowest life expectancy of them all.
One contributing factor is that Americans suffer higher death rates from smoking, obesity, homicides, opioid overdoses, suicides, road accidents, and infant mortality. In fact, low-income Americans die at a younger age than poor people in other developed nations because of deep poverty and less access to healthcare.
The other half of the equation is a system that delivers sick care instead of health care and reaps billions of dollars in profits driven by outrageously high fees, opaque pricing, and dubious business practices. And that’s not about to change anytime soon, despite crushing consumer medical debt and rising health plan costs for American employers.
Employers should seek out health plans that are designed to lower the cost of care and improve outcomes. When members spend less on premiums and out-of-pocket costs, they have more resources available to take better care of themselves — from quality food to the pursuit of mental and financial health. Such plans allow people to embrace wellness and bend the life expectancy curve to their advantage.