5 Questions Employers Should Ask Their Vision Insurance Provider

Published 03/20/2023
by Heritage Vision Plans

For businesses who want to offer their employees high quality healthcare, the right insurance provider is essential.

In the modern business environment, health insurance is considered an industry standard for employers who want to recruit a competitive workforce. Employees take benefits packages into consideration when assessing job offers, and if a particular set of offerings doesn’t meet their expectations, it can lead to dissatisfaction.

Although it can sometimes be overlooked in the broader health insurance marketplace, make no mistake: vision insurance is an essential benefit. Employees struggling with poor eyesight are less productive and more prone to making mistakes. Even those with healthy vision may have family members on their plan who require care. Those costs can add up, and no parent wants to be watching the budget when it comes to making sure their child can see.

When businesses do offer vision insurance to their employees, the provider they choose will influence how much the employee draws on that benefit, and how much value they perceive from having it. To ensure your employees are getting the best, here are five questions businesses should ask their vision insurance provider.

1. What is your provider network coverage?

No one is going to be happy with vision insurance that forces them to travel miles and miles out of their way for an eye exam. It’s not only inconvenient, it’s also not advisable if someone is worried about their vision or if they’ve just had their eyes dilated. As an employer, you want to be sure your workforce can safely access the benefits you’re providing, and that means making sure your employees will be able to find a provider who takes their insurance close by.

At Heritage, we’ve worked to build our own provider network. Our goal is to offer at least two providers within a ten-mile radius for any member with an urban zip code, and one provider within a twenty-five mile radius for members in rural zip codes. We’re also willing to approve out-of-network coverage on a case-by-case basis under some circumstances. For instance, we wouldn’t ask an elderly member to drive a fifty-mile round trip for eye care if there is another provider close by.

2. What is the minimum size group you will cover?

For small businesses, offering benefits can be a challenge as many companies don’t want to work with small employee groups. This can limit the options they are able to choose from on the market, and even if they are able to find a plan, it can mean they’re paying a higher rate or that their employees are covering more out of pocket.

Over the years, we’ve made an effort to offer coverage that even businesses as small as ten employees can afford. As a small company ourselves, we recognize the value that a flexible team can bring to the table. We’re willing to work closely with our clients to create a benefits package customized to their needs.

3. What is your customer service like?

When you or your employees have a question, the last thing you want is to spend hours on hold or days waiting for an email. Instead, you want to speak to someone who can give you answers right then and there, and who will stay with you until your issue is resolved.

That’s the kind of customer service we like to receive, so that’s what we aim to provide. Our team will go the extra mile to ensure our members are able to access their benefits, even if it means calling a provider while they’re at their appointment so we can resolve an issue on the spot.

4. Do you offer any discounts through partnerships with other service providers?

No one wants to miss out on a good deal simply because they didn’t hear about it soon enough, and that’s doubly true when it comes to healthcare. As an ancillary health benefit, vision insurance providers will sometimes reach out to other organizations offering complementary services in order to sweeten the deal on their own benefits package.

In our case, we’ve developed two partnerships that dovetail closely with our own services. The first is a discount on LASIK services offered through our friends at LasikPlus, TLC Laser Eye Centers and The LASIK Vision Institute. Heritage members can receive up to $800 or 15% off services as an added benefit. Our second is through Amplifon, the hearing healthcare service. Hearing loss affects millions of people across the country each year. Our partnership makes it easier for our members to get the hearing support they need.

5. How are you giving back to your community?

Ok, this may not be an essential question to ask every vision insurance provider, but it’s one we wish you’d ask us! That’s because we’ve put a lot of effort over the years into strengthening our local roots, and we’re proud of the work we’ve accomplished.

As a family business born and bred in Detroit, we’ve had a front row seat to the needs of our community, and one need stood out as a challenge we were uniquely suited to address. Through our voucher program with Detroit Public Schools, we’ve been able to provide free eye exams and glasses to students. The program has been such a success that we’re planning to expand our reach through our own charitable organization, Heritage Vision of Hope.

We believe that our charitable work speaks to the culture we’ve built in our organization. And because our culture affects how we see the world and how we work with others, we believe it matters for you, too.

Asking the right questions is worth the time to find the best insurance provider for your employees.

As you can see, just a few questions can tell you a lot. Out of all the decisions businesses have to make in a day, taking a moment to learn more about their vision insurance provider can make one decision a little easier.

And of course, if you have more questions about our services, we would be more than happy to answer. Contact us today to learn more.