Regular medical checkups help keep us in good health. Yet many people know more about the routine maintenance schedule for their car than about the preventive care they need. In fact, Americans get preventive care at only half the recommended rate, according to the CDC.1
The good news is that many preventive care services are covered under most health plan benefits. As a small business owner, here’s why you should encourage your employees to take advantage of these benefits:
U.S. employers lose $1,685 per employee, on average, each year due to absenteeism.2 And three conditions that cost employers the most—diabetes, heart attacks and high blood pressure—can often be prevented or caught early and treated successfully.3 And when employers provide paid time for doctor's appointments, it shows employees the company cares about their health, which fosters loyalty and helps the bottom line over the long term.
Preventive care can help avoid some conditions and detect others sooner, making them easier to treat. Consider that seven out of 10 deaths every year are attributed to chronic illnesses, such as diabetes and heart disease—which are preventable and/or manageable with screenings and appropriate healthcare.1
Preventive care services are typically available at no charge when you visit a medical provider in your health plan's network. Even if a member hasn’t met his deductible, the insurance company picks up 100% of the bill for these services.
While each health plan has its own inclusions, exclusions, costs and coverages—and covered services also vary based on your age and risk factors, these preventive services generally are covered at no cost:4
- Immunizations and vaccines to prevent infections and illnesses such as flu and tetanus
- Screenings and tests for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, breast cancer (for women over 40) and colorectal cancer (for adults over 50)
- Routine checks such as physical exams and well-woman visits
Check with your plan (or inquire as you’re comparing quotes) about which preventive services are covered. And remember, as a small business owner you’re an employee too, and should lead by example by taking advantage of these benefits.