Adapting benefit strategies in a new normal
The pandemic altered the way we work, shop, eat, exercise and live affecting nearly every person and business. Each day, we learn more about the virus and continue to test ways to navigate through until vaccines and treatments help us move more confidently into a new normal.
Deferring medical care due to decreased earnings1
Employers are turning to alternative work arrangements such as shifting from full-time to part-time employees and hiring contract workers.
Increased use of telemedicine
The incorporation of telemedicine that has emerged from coronavirus is a transformative development in routine medical care.2 During the first quarter of 2020, the number of telehealth visits increased by 50%.3
Increase in stress and emotional concerns
Employees are suffering from stress and emotional concerns at higher rates than in the past. According to a study conducted by University of North Carolina Chapel Hill and Harvard Medical School, more than half of respondents reported to be more stressed than they were before the pandemic.4
Times are not typical. Benefit strategies are no exception.
Employee benefits are undergoing transformational change as the needs of employers and employees evolve. Businesses can use learnings from the pandemic to develop better-equipped, more-engaged workforces.
Voluntary supplemental insurance
These plans pay indemnity benefits for covered accidents and illnesses and could also provide benefits if covered illnesses arise as complications of the coronavirus.
- For employers offering major medical coverage, these benefits can help offset an employee’s out-of-pocket expenses.
- For employers with part-time or variable hour employees, supplemental insurance allows them to offer limited medical benefits to workers who may not typically be eligible for employer health insurance benefits.
Employers can incorporate telemedicine services to increase access to care. While telemedicine will not replace physical examinations, it allows individuals to receive necessary healthcare services while decreasing the risk of spreading infections and offers access to individuals in remote or rural locations.
Many supplemental insurance plans include these services as part of their value-added services at low or no direct cost to employers.
Employee mental health services
Offering resources such as employee assistance program that foster mental and emotional well-being can fuel workforce productivity.
Administration and funding for mental health services may be difficult for some employers. Many supplemental insurance plans make an EAP available as part of their value-added services.
Creative benefit strategies
AXIS Group Benefits Insurance Group focuses on industries with high-turnover and variable hour employees, where one-size-fits-all benefit solutions might not meet the needs of your clients.
1 Abelson, R. (2020, June 16). Why People Are Still Avoiding the Doctor (It's Not the Virus). Accessed January 11, 2021:
2 Brody, Jane E. A Pandemic Benefit: The Expansion of Telemedicine. The New York Times. Posted May 11, 2020. Accessed December 3, 2020:
3 Trends in the Use of Telehealth During the Emergence of the COVID-19 Pandemic - United States, January–March 2020. (2020, October 30). Accessed December 3, 2020.
4 Chrissyfarr. (2020, July 1). More than half of Americans say they're more stressed than they were before the Covid-19 pandemic. Accessed December 3, 2020.