More and more employers are offering supplemental cancer insurance as part of their employee benefits package.
Over 1.8 million Americans will receive a cancer diagnosis this year, according to the National Cancer Institute. As healthcare costs continue to rise, many employees find themselves fighting a battle on several fronts when they receive a cancer diagnosis: not only do they need to fight their illness, but they need to fight the mounting pile of bills that result from their treatment. High deductible insurance plans have become the norm and, for many Americans, meeting the out-of-pocket costs of their treatment creates a significant and potentially catastrophic burden.
Employees who are facing a potentially deadly disease need to put all of their focus on getting well, not on their finances. Many employers have begun offering supplemental cancer insurance that covers the gap between their core insurance offerings and the costs that are accrued during treatment to help them do just that.
What is Cancer Insurance?
As with most types of supplemental insurance offerings, there are several different types of cancer insurance on the market that employers may consider:
Indemnity: An indemnity supplemental cancer insurance policy covers expenses for approved treatments at a fixed, limited rate.
Expense-incurred: An expense-incurred supplemental cancer insurance plan pays out a percentage of the insured’s covered treatment expenses up to a maximum limit.
Lump sum: With a lump sum supplemental cancer insurance policy, such as Aflac’s cancer insurance plan that is available through Accuchex, the insured receives either scheduled or lump sum payments to cover expenses as they see fit. With this type of coverage, employees may choose to receive either a lump sum payout or scheduled payments upon receiving a positive cancer diagnosis. These funds may be used to cover any expenses, from procedures and co-pays to mortgage payments and child care costs.
How Employers Benefit From Offering Supplemental Cancer Insurance
A cancer diagnosis comes with more than just the physical symptoms of the disease. Many cancer treatments come with side effects that will make working full time hours during the course of their treatment difficult, if not impossible.
Coping with a cancer diagnosis can also be challenging, both for the person who receives the diagnosis as well as their caregivers and loved ones. Stress and anxiety are common responses both during and after treatment, and these feelings are likely to be compounded by mounting financial concerns that result from the cost of treatment.
Employers who offer their employees supplemental cancer insurance policies offer more than just financial assistance; they offer peace of mind. Many employees may never need to file a claim on a cancer insurance policy. Those who do, however, do so knowing that they can focus on healing because they have a safety net that will help them pay the bills until they’re back to work.
Many employers choose to offer supplemental insurance options that are stackable. For instance, an employee who is covered by both supplemental cancer insurance and supplemental hospital insurance can stack their coverage and receive payments from their hospital insurance plan in addition to the payout from the cancer policy for any periods of hospitalization that result from their diagnosis and treatment.
How Do Supplemental Cancer Insurance Policies Work?
With supplemental cancer insurance coverage, it is common for employers to pay the premium costs to cover their employees while extending the option for employees to contribute to the premium costs of adding their spouse or children to the plan.
The portable supplemental cancer insurance plans provided by Aflac cover children of the insured for free and allow employees to choose to extend coverage their spouses or other qualified dependents on a pre-tax basis. Employers may also allocate a set dollar amount per employee for supplemental benefits and allow each employee to decide if they want to cover their dependents.
For employers who cover the cost of their employees’ coverage, 100% of the expense is deductible for the business. They also enjoy a reduction in their FICA tax liability of up to 7.65% of the total pre-tax payroll deductions withheld from their employees.
Many employers find that the tax deductions they receive from offering these benefits make them an extremely low-cost or even no-cost perk that yields impressive returns, such as:
Increased productivity - Stress doesn’t just lead to slower healing, it also leads to heightened distractibility and lower productivity. By helping employees pay for the costs associated with cancer treatment, employers ease some of the financial stress and worry that can plague employees who are concerned about their ability to pay for an unexpected illness.
Increased employee satisfaction & retention - Nearly 60% of employees have reported that they would consider taking a role that trades lower compensation for a more robust benefits package. Among those who express that they plan to seek new employment within the next 12 months, an improved benefits package is one of the top two things their employers could offer to keep them in their roles and increase their satisfaction.
Greater ability to attract top talent - When employers don’t offer the benefits that members of today’s workforce need to feel financially and emotionally secure, top prospects look elsewhere to find the compensation and benefits package that they want and need. For employers hoping to attract and retain the best people available, supplemental insurance policies can be a cost-effective way to round out their offerings and ensure that they don’t lose the right person due to offering the wrong benefits.
Your Partner for Supplemental Insurance
Supplemental cancer insurance can be a cost-effective addition to your core benefits offerings that can give peace of mind to your employees while yielding outstanding returns for your business. It can not only provide your employees a safety net when they need it should they receive a positive cancer diagnosis, but it also eases financial worries for those who have not been diagnosed but worry about their ability to pay for treatment if they were to need it in the future. It also makes you more attractive as an employer to job seekers and can help you attract and retain a highly productive, engaged, and talented workforce who are committed to helping you achieve your business goals.To learn more about the Aflac supplemental insurance plans available by partnering with Accuchex, including supplemental cancer insurance, download the Accuchex Guide to Supplemental Insurance for Employers or call Accuchex Payroll Management Services at 877-422-2824.