Considering that the vast majority of Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck and 40% struggle to cover a $400 emergency expense, it’s no wonder why so many employees consider themselves functionally uninsured despite being covered by their employer’s health plan. The standard employer-sponsored health plan comes with a nearly $8,000 out-of-pocket expense.  And, when an employer’s price tag to purchase that insurance for a family now exceeds $20,000 a year, no HR professional likes to hear that their employee “benefit” they offer has become an employee “liability.”

With January 1 around the corner and most health plans turning the odometers on their deductibles back to $0, employees and their family members will need help managing and paying their out-of-pocket costs – particularly those that hit early in the year. Studies show that individuals enrolled in high deductible health plans are skipping care, which has costly consequences. Employees who skip care stay sicker for longer and as a result, employers lose worker productivity.  When outcomes erode and care is delayed, employers also see an increase in health plan expenses.  Bottom line – aside from wanting to keep employees happy, employers also want to keep their employees healthy.

HealthBridge Financial, Inc. was co-founded by healthcare and employee benefit industry experts Gregory VandenBosch and Amy O’Meara Chambers, J.D.  The Grand Rapids pair set out to revolutionize the way healthcare out-of-pocket costs are managed and paid.

“Over the last decade, Amy and I have watched deductibles grow to a level where even insured individuals feel like they can’t afford care, healthcare providers have become financial risk-bearers, and employers worry about both the physical and financial wellness of employees and their families,” said VandenBosch.

“The patient financial experience just gets worse as out-of-pockets grow,” said Chambers. “The confusion and stress surrounding healthcare billing and collections is a common complaint.  Getting multiple bills from multiple providers all demanding payment at the same time is a nightmare for most American families.”        

The HealthBridge team has created a first-of-its-kind benefit solution that offers a revolutionary way for individuals to manage and pay for their out-of-pocket medical expenses – copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles. HealthBridge sits right alongside a company’s health plan. When a member receives a medical service covered by their health plan from a HealthBridge Network Provider, HealthBridge helps them pay for and manage any associated out-of-pocket costs. HealthBridge pays the healthcare provider quickly for what the member owes without collection burden or cost. Then, HealthBridge serves members with a consolidated monthly statement and friendly repayment terms – such as a 10% discount on balances paid in full and interest free extended payments – without credit checks.

Adding HealthBridge and educating employees about this financial safety net while they are also learning about their health plan gives employees the confidence to seek the right care at the right time without stress of how to pay for it. HealthBridge gives employees something their health plan alone can’t – financial security.