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Nov 16, 2023

CEOs and CFOs … hey, this show is for you. Let’s start here:

What do all of these numbers have in common: $140,000, $3 million, $35 million, and $3 billion?

These are all actual examples of how much employers, unions, and some public entities saved on healthcare benefits for themselves and their employees. The roadmap to saving 25% on pharmacy spend and/or 15% on total cost of care in ways that improve employee health and satisfaction always begins when one thing happens. There’s one vital first step.

That first step is CEOs and/or CFOs or their equivalents roll up their sleeves and get involved in healthcare benefits. Why can’t much happen without you, CEOs and CFOs?

Here’s the IRL: In 2023, the healthcare industry has been financialized. There is a whole financial layer in between your company and its healthcare benefits.

And unless the C-suite is involved here and bringing their financial acumen and organizational willpower to the equation, your company and your employees are currently paying hundreds of thousands, maybe millions, of dollars too much and doing so within a business model that deeply exacerbates inequities. There are people out there who are very strategically taking wild advantage of a situation where CEOs/CFOs fear anything to do with healthcare in the title and don’t do their normal level of due diligence. You think it’s an accident that this whole space got so “complicated”? HR needs your help.

Bottom line, if you are a CEO or CFO and you do not know everything that Mark Cuban and Ferrin Williams talk about on the pod today … wow, are you getting shellacked. Mark Cuban uses a different word. Healthcare benefits are, after all, for most companies the second biggest line-item expense after payroll.

But don’t despair here, because all of this information is really and truly actionable. Others out there are cutting zeros off of their spend and actually doing it in ways that are a total win for employees as well.

My guest today, Mark Cuban, is a CEO, after all; and when he looked into it, it took him T-minus ten minutes to figure out just the order of magnitude that his “trusted” benefits consultants and PBM (pharmacy benefit manager) and ASOs (administrative services only) and others were extracting from his business. He pushed back. So can you.

But just another reason to dig into that financial layer wrapping around your employee health benefits right now, you might get sued by your employees. Below is an ad currently being sent around on LinkedIn by class action attorneys recruiting employee plan members to sue their employers for ERISA (Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974) violations. It’s the same attorneys, by the way, from those 401(k) class action lawsuits. I’ve talked to a few CEOs and CFOs who are scrambling to get ahead of that. You might want to consider doing so as well.