Did you know that eyeglasses can cost more than $600 a pair? Because of this, people often struggle when buying contacts or glasses.
As an employer, it’s essential to understand the value and importance of vision insurance. While most employees are satisfied with their overall benefits plan, many aren’t as happy when it comes to eye care.
Only 35% describe their current vision coverage as excellent or very good, and 21% describe it as poor or very poor—the highest “failure” rate among all the benefits. This is especially shocking considering it’s ranked as the third most important aspect of employee coverage!
Want to keep your team happy and protected? Make sure you provide them with the vision care they need.
It may come as a surprise, but vision care is critical to overall health. Regular eye exams make it easier to catch vision issues when they’re still at a treatable stage.
They can also give insights into conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, and hypertension—making these checkups an important part of preventative healthcare.
Basic vision coverage includes services that help maintain healthy eyes, such as eye exams, eyeglasses, and contact lenses. More extensive benefit plans may also include corrective eye surgery and lens implants. But although many employers offer some employee vision coverage, competing priorities often mean that the available reimbursement is too low to meet staff needs.
Why Should I Care About Providing Vision Insurance to My Employees?
Vision coverage is much more important to employees than you might expect. As an employer, providing vision benefits can help you in the following ways:
Attract and Retain Talent
Employees put a lot of emphasis on having good vision benefits, with 91% rating it as a an important aspect of their coverage. In fact, eye care is a key factor people consider when deciding to join a new company or to remain in their current position. In one recent survey, 88% of respondents said that they would give this benefit either “some consideration” (34%) or “heavy consideration” (54%) when choosing a job.
Have More Productive Employees
Not only are staff with vision problems less efficient at work, they can also increase your company’s medical expenses. Keep costs down and ensure your team is healthy and productive by providing the vision insurance they need.
Differentiate Yourself From Your Competition
By offering extra benefits that other employers don’t, you’ll be more attractive to potential hires when recruiting new talent. Set your company apart from the rest by going the extra mile for your team.
How to Better Meet Your Employees’ Vision Care Needs
As an employer, it’s essential to re-evaluate your benefit plan from time to time to ensure you’re meeting everyone’s health needs. Start by talking to your team about their coverage and their overall wellness. If you find that staff often have to pay for vision-related products out of pocket, you may need to consider increasing their maximum or looking at alternative options in order to keep everyone happy, engaged, and healthy.
Alternative Option: Try a Health Care Spending Account
Is the cost of increasing the cap on vision care too high for your budget? Introducing an employee health spending account (HSA) is a great option to consider.
These plans are often more affordable and flexible, allowing you to meet your team’s health needs at a reduced cost. They work by providing employees with a set amount of money annually, which they can use at their own discretion on any health-related expense. Staff could choose to spend it all on eyeglasses, contacts, and sunglasses, or something else entirely.
Better yet, HSAs are highly adaptable, and employers can choose to top up funds either intermittently or at the beginning of each year. You can also opt to pair an HSA with your pre-existing benefit plan to give your team some added flexibility without reducing coverage.
In addition to Health Care Spending Accounts, some providers of contact lenses and eyeglasses have group benefits programs which offer substantial discounts over traditional retail outlets. One gives up an element of choice with these programs but the savings are significant.
It doesn’t require 20/20 vision to see that employee eye care matters. By providing the right insurance, you can increase staff retention and productivity, reduce their financial and emotional stress, and protect their health—now, and for years to come.
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