Healthcare has historically been a controversial topic of debate. Some see it as a commodity. Others see it as a right. Some want profit-based care. Others want value-based care.
Currently, you will find many approaches in the healthcare industry. You can seek out for-profit health care facilities that will provide you with as much care as you can afford. Or, you can find health care systems with subsidized payment models based on performance and quality of care, rather than quantity.
Why does this matter? As a business or a health insurance provider, the direction of the healthcare industry affects the benefits you can provide to your employees or companies. It will also affect the quality and availability of care your employees receive.
So what is the profit-based care debate and how does that affect your company’s wellness benefits?
Pros of Profit-Based Care
First, profit-based care has the benefit of keeping physicians within their scope. In this approach, your physician isn’t overburdened with care demands outside of their specialty. However, value-based care loses this benefit, as physicians are challenged to provide the best quality of care they can and potentially forced to treat ailments outside of their usual specialization.
Some believe that profit-based care also can reduce healthcare costs. Health care spending in the U.S. increased by 9.7% in 2020, reaching $4.1 trillion. But in the profit-based system, a business minded and competitive approach can result in a more efficient system with less waste. This competition can help drive care costs down and make healthcare more affordable for all.
Cons of Profit-Based Care
However, profit-based care comes with challenges too. It can decrease the availability of patient care for “unprofitable” patients. A hospital system might refuse to provide care to patients who can’t pay the bills. This forces patients with a high health risk to use non-profit healthcare options—potentially limiting the care those nonprofits can provide to others due to lack of resources for the mass influx of low-profit patients.
Effect on Employee Wellness Programs
The healthcare industry is in a unique position. Their choice to view healthcare as a commodity or a right will have pros and cons that affect society as a whole—including your company and your employees.
But there is good news! You can do something to aid the healthcare industry no matter what direction it heads. You can provide a quality employee wellness program in your benefit package. What good will this do?
There are numerous benefits of wellness programs, as they can increase productivity among your employees and encourage health behaviors. But their primary benefit is how they improve the health of your employees. Medical costs will fall by about $3.27 for every $1 you spend on a wellness program because these programs encourage your employees to exercise and live healthy lives. They won’t have to worry as much about the profit- or value-based care debate if they can stay healthy and not require significant medical care in the first place.
Wellness programs are a key player in the healthcare system, not just an add-on. So, try adding Peerfit, a fitness program, to your employee benefits package. With Peerfit, your employees can have access to a whole network of fitness centers across the country, allowing them to exercise freely. They could also exercise using celebrity-led online classes or learn to manage specific health conditions with FitOn, which merged with Peerfit in early 2022.
Your employees shouldn’t have to use the hospital as their first means of healthcare. Enable them to improve their health right now with Peerfit, the first step in corporate wellness.