Research indicates health of employees is priority; efforts to reduce costs include dependent eligibility audits
DALLAS, June 23 /PRNewswire/ -- Today the SouthWest Benefits Association, a regional, non-profit established to foster relationships and support the educational growth of professionals in employee benefits, released the results of its employer survey regarding benefits plans in light of current economic challenges.
"The responses indicate that as employers develop benefit plans for 2010 they are looking for ways to reduce benefit costs, without further reducing benefits," said Marianne Fazen, executive director of the SouthWest Benefits Association (SWBA). "Surprisingly, many responded that they plan to increase their wellness programs."
Key Survey Findings
SWBA's survey was facilitated by Buck Consultants and was submitted electronically to SWBA's employer members.
"Reflecting the reality of the times and the need for more stringent cost, expense, and plan management, employers are more aggressively implementing cost-reduction actions aimed at uncovering hidden costs, such as dependent eligibility audits," said Jorge Font, MPH, a principal with Buck Consultants in Houston and past president of SWBA. "At the same time, employers indicate they want to continue to increase their investment in health improvement and wellness programs, while trying to avoid other benefit cuts or cost shifting through disproportionate increases in monthly premium, co-pays, and deductibles. It appears companies wish to maintain benefits for employees that are staying and being asked to work harder."
Founded in 1975, the SouthWest Benefits Association is a regional, non-profit organization designed to foster relationships and support the educational growth of professionals in employee benefits. Members represent a wide range of specialties, including corporate human resources, benefit plan administration, financial management, investment counseling, third party administration, law, accounting, actuarial, and consulting. Through an annual schedule of professional educational conferences and workshops, SWBA provides its members the opportunity for discussion of a wide range of issues confronting professionals in the complex and increasingly regulated field of employee benefits. www.swba.org
Note to editors: The full report is available upon request.
|SOURCE SouthWest Benefits Association|
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