A good, quality vision plan is a valuable asset for your employees. The National Eye Institute reports that 66 percent of adults need vision correction. Health care providers say that routine eye exams are essential for preserving vision and safeguarding eye health. Vision insurance and vision benefits plans can make routine eye care more affordable.
Vision insurance differs from health care coverage because it does not fall under Affordable Care Act rules and regulations. That gives you more leeway when choosing a plan that best fits your employees’ needs and budgets. Group health plans, however, must include a provision for pediatric vision services. Insurance premiums usually are deducted directly from employees’ paychecks.
The cost of vision insurance for your company will depend on plan design, the state where your business is located, and your company’s size. Anthem data from 2018 pegs the cost of most vision plans – including eye exam and eyeglasses or contact lens coverage – at $10 or less per individual per month.
When you purchase vision insurance, you are purchasing two products:
- Access to a network of eye care providers, including optometrists or general ophthalmologists, who have agreed to provide services and/or products at a reduced cost. According to a consumer study commissioned by EyeMed, employees are most interested in seeing the doctors they want and shopping where they want for frames.
- Basic eye care services and products, such as annual eye exams, eyeglasses frames and lenses and contact lenses.
Many group vision plans have a monetary cap on more expensive services such as eye surgery and advanced procedures, or provide a discount or don’t cover them at all. Insurance providers usually pay up to a certain amount, and the patient pays the rest of the bill.
For more information on what type of vision benefit plan would be best for your employees, talk to your broker, benefits consultant or insurance plan carrier.