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4 calls for medical help from employees

Originally posted on https://ebn.benefitnews.com

The Grand Rounds’ recent Employee Benefit Expectation survey, the results of which were announced Wednesday, emphasizes the high value employees place on medical plans that can extended to newer shapes of families – same-sex couples, aging parents and medical dependents much older than 21. “The modern employee,” the survey reads, “is looking for employers that recognize the changing state of familial responsibilities.”

Access to medical opinions and expert advice is very important to today’s employees – rated more desirable than free annual flu shots. Here are four things workers crave out of medical coverage and information, and how employers can benefit from meeting those needs.

Don’t know where to start

More than one in four (28%) employees tell Grand Rounds they wouldn’t know how to find a qualified medical specialist for a serious illness affecting them or a loved one, and 35% say they would pay $5,000 or more for the world’s leading specialist to review their own or a loved one’s case. “Today’s employee is hungry for better access,” Grand Rounds says.

A nickel’s worth of free advice

Some 60% of respondents would be more likely to stay with their employer if free access to expert medical opinions was offered, versus only traditional health insurance. Additionally, when choosing between multiple employment offers, 68% say they would be more likely to select a position that includes free access to expert medical opinions that extends to their family.

“There is a real talent war going on in this country, especially here in Silicon Valley,” says Rick Foreman, CFO and VP of business operations for Wealthfront, a Grand Rounds client. “This means that recruiting and retaining top-notch talent no longer means providing weekly happy hours or a Ping-Pong table. It’s about adding real value to our employees’ lives.”

Extend to the aging

As part of the so-called Sandwich Generation, 47% of adults in their 40s and 50s have a parent aged 65 or older and are either raising a young child or financially supporting a grown child, according to the Pew Research Center. Increasingly, employees want help with their older family members: 60% of employees with living parents tell Grand Rounds that it’s important health care benefits extend to them. “As employees widen their definition of family, they expect employers to do the same,” Ground Rounds says.

Have illness, will travel

A whopping 89% of those surveyed say they would travel to receive a second opinion from a medical expert on a disease or condition. More than a third (35%) would go anywhere in the United States, and 22% say they would travel anywhere in the world – such is the extent of their desire for the best possible medical help.