Do you remember the old commercial with the cool Mac guy being contrasted with the nerdy PC guy? That is pretty much like a Big Tree-based health care system vs the other guys. Big Tree is the new cool way to do health care that makes the other guys look like they are playing in the 1990s.
There are many reasons business owners help with the cost of health care. It helps them recruit top talent. It shows that they are good corporate citizens. It helps provide for their employees. But as health care costs go up, this essential benefit is becoming unaffordable.
Our Business Plans include:
- Unlimited access to the employee’s health team.
- Free Medications from our list of 120 of the top generic medications (see medication tab above).
- Free Shipping of medications for patients that live outside of mid Missouri.
- Acute care management (sinus infection, UTIs).
- Chronic disease management (diabetes, high blood pressure).
- Preventative medicine (heart disease prevention, cancer prevention).
- Mental health care (treatment of depression, anxiety).
- Substance abuse care (medication to stop smoking or help with withdrawals).
- Medical Weight Loss (medications to help patients lose weight).
- Care Coordination (referrals to specialists, scheduling radiology).
- Low cost labs (90% off of retail cost).
If you are a business with more than 50 employees, you are essentially required by law to provide health insurance to your employees. Hopefully, you have a self funded health plan. If you don’t, you may be the only company left out there still paying UnitedHealthCare full price for insurance. Self funded health plans of various kinds allow employers to provide health insurance at a cheaper price and to keep much of the money leftover in low cost years.
We work with several insurance administrators to integrate into health plans in a way that dramatically decreases the cost of care, which increases the probability that you will get a refund. ER utilization drops by 90%. Patients can text their doctor after hours and be back at work the next day. Because we sell employees their prescriptions at wholesale prices, plan pharmacy costs drop by 80%+. Sound too good to be true? It gets better. Because we make plan costs go down, many reinsurers will include the cost of Big Tree at no additional cost to your self funded health plan.
Small businesses often provide health insurance. It is common for such plans to cost $400-800/employee/month. Now that the “Individual Mandate” has been repealed, employees have several innovative options that can be utilized. It may be worth looking at a self funded health plan as noted above. Many relatively young, healthy groups can lower costs while providing the upside of getting a refund during good years. Other employers have taken advantage of a program that links a “health share plan” and Big Tree (this is what Big Tree uses for its employees). Typical monthly costs are $200-$300/employee/month for better care than traditional insurance. See here for more information.
Most small businesses, and many larger businesses with part-time employees don’t provide health insurance but can still be helped by providing a low cost health benefit. Big Tree can act as a stand alone health benefit (locally $59/month, or our virtual plan for $44/month). This will provide 90% of the health care an employee will need: acute care, chronic disease care, low or no cost medications and low cost labs. It costs an employer about $0.34/hr for a 40 hr/wk employee to have the Big Tree Unlimited plan. Many employers use it as a way to recruit top talent without having to push salaries higher.
Business Associations are eligible for a special discount. For $39/month, member business employees can get the Big Tree Virtual Personal Medical Team. This program provides unlimited virtual care (24-7 access via video, text message, etc) for acute and chronic diseases, 120 no-cost medications and free shipping of medications to the employee’s home. This includes our weight loss program and our quit smoking program. The Personal Medical Team program is designed to help associations recruit new businesses as only associations are eligible for this program. For most associations, the cost savings of joining the program is less than the dues for the association. Eligible employees must live in Missouri or Kansas. For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org.
By the Numbers: Big Tree Medical Home recent results for a corporate client:
- 59% reduction in total healthcare spending
- 90% reduction in ER visits
- 85% reduction in pharmacy spend
- employees report a Net Promoter Score of 85.
Background: Healthcare Costs
As healthcare costs increase by double digits annually, many large health systems boast of merely decreasing the rate of increase. Direct care primary care clinics have demonstrated total lower costs. Especially for self-funded employers, such an opportunity is beneficial at every level. Additionally, this
is merely an exciting opportunity to offer your employees.
When is the last time you were excited to talk to your employees about a change in your health benefits package?
Total Lower Costs
We believe that an attractive plan is a combination in which an employer pays all or part of the $59/month Big Tree fee and couples this with a plan which includes a higher deductible and high ER copays. This should encourage good primary care (for things such as sinus infections and depression) all while helping employees to use a more frugal approach to the expensive aspects of healthcare such as emergency room use, hospitalizations and elective surgeries. Furthermore, as the Big Tree staff will help patients find the lowest cost test or surgical center, the $59 per month fee seems like a wise investment.
Keep in mind when healthcarebluebook. com looked at hip replacement in the 65201 zip code, they found a $31,000 difference between the highest and lowest priced procedures. If Big Tree helped just one patient get a “Fair Price” rather than a high-end price, the difference would be enough to pay for 35 employees to have Big Tree care for the next year. More than half of the 44 percent of US individuals seen in the ER each year, do not require emergency care. An employer and their employees at a business that employs 35 persons would spend nearly $10,000 per year on unnecessary ER visits. A company
that provides Big Tree Medical Home to their employees should expect to avoid that cost. It will be difficult to quantify how many days of work that an employee is more productive just because their mental health disorder or minor bacterial infection are promptly recognized and treated.
Attractive to Employees
Many smaller employers want to be productive corporate citizens and help
employees with health insurance, but with high and increasing costs, the provision of health insurance starts to make many small businesses non-competitive. Offering your employees no-cost primary care is an excellent way to provide a benefit to make your business attractive to potential employees while keeping costs low to keep your prices competitive in the marketplace.
How are we able to provide exceptional care at a fraction of the cost? Primary care has long been ripe for reform. The recent explosion in the number of urgent care and quick care clinics in mid-Missouri are a testament to the primary care access problem in our area. Because Big Tree is not seeking to build a new cancer center or pay for our newly constructed tower of intensive care units, we can charge remarkably affordable fees.
Team Based Care
Team-based care also strategically utilizes nurse practitioners who are underutilized in our healthcare system. To salvage our healthcare system, we will allow qualified providers to do all that they were trained to do—heal. Insisting that each has the right to referral center level care for each cold or sinus infection will merely drive prices higher. If you are trying to put in a nail, a hammer will do, the sledgehammer isn’t needed. Team-based care, in which each member of the healthcare team operates to the fullest extent of their ability, is a platform for radical improvements in the cost of healthcare, without sacrificing quality. An extensive body of literature documents the fact that “patient outcomes on satisfaction with care, health status, functional status, number of ER visits, hospitalizations, blood glucose, blood pressure, and mortality are similar for NPs and MDs.
If you would like to research this idea further, key topics include “Direct Primary Care” and “Global payments for primary care.” Several companies in major cities have experimented with similar models. Practices such as Iora Health and Qliance are demonstrating impressive results, as has the more concierge oriented MDVIP. Qliance is an especially exciting case as their over-reliance on venture capital, and lack of team-based care seemed to make their recent closure inevitable. Nonetheless, the model proved sound, as the results above demonstrate. Big Tree Medical Home only seeks to bring this cutting-edge approach to healthcare reform to the mid-Missouri market. We hope by decreasing the cost of healthcare while increasing its quality, we can help make mid-Missouri a more cost-effective place to operate a business.
We also believe any of our packages would make AMAZING employee wellness programs, which we can provide in the privacy of our office, or as a health fair at your place of business.