Providing health care benefits to workers is becoming increasingly expensive for manufacturers, but Congress can take measures to help offset these costs, according to the results of a recent NAM study.
What’s going on: The NAM released “Manufacturers on the Front Lines of Communities: A Deep Commitment to Health Care” yesterday. The report includes the results of surveys and manufacturer interviews that detail industry-wide health benefits and trends, as well as federal policy proposals that could jeopardize manufacturers’ ability to continue offering health care plans.
Key findings: Below are some of the report’s most notable takeaways:
- Tax incentives: Designing and offering health care benefits is getting more expensive for employers. To fight rising costs, Congress must keep in place the tax benefits offered to companies providing such plans to workers.
- Affordability: Employer-offered health care must be affordable for employees. To ensure that it is, Congress should consider seeking revision of some of the opaque rules governing health and flexible savings accounts and pharmacy benefit managers.
- Early intervention: Intervening in health-related situations early—as in the cases of obesity, cancer and other conditions—can lower future costs for employers and employees alike. Primary care can catch and help correct many illnesses and so must be incentivized.
The last word: “Manufacturers feel a deep commitment to providing quality health care for their employees despite the increased costs and challenges of doing so,” said NAM Director of Human Resources and Innovation Policy Julia Bogue.
- “Manufacturers are innovative in their health benefits to best address the challenges employees face, from primary care to chronic-condition management.”