health insurance

5.5 Million People Have Lost Health Insurance During COVID-19

A survey conducted by a leading HR software company has revealed that half of American small business employees lost health insurance benefits as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the reduction in healthcare benefits, three-quarters of employees said they are satisfied or very satisfied with their employers current health plan, with 58% citing the benefit as ‘useful’ in the current situation. A third saw benefits like online fitness classes, wellbeing app subscriptions, and telemedicine access added to their package during the pandemic.

Half of small business employees in America have lost health insurance benefits during the COVID-19 pandemic, new research reveals.

Leading HR software company,, conducted a study into how small business employees really feel about the benefits and perks of their employment in 2020. The company surveyed more than 1,100 full time small business employees to compile a comprehensive overview of employee satisfaction. 

The full survey results and further information can be found here:

Health insurance remains top of the list when it comes to the benefit valued most by employees, with 70% of respondents saying that they are unlikely or very unlikely to accept a job if it doesn’t offer health benefits. Additionally, half of employees said they are staying in their current role due to their health insurance benefits. 

Despite the reduction in benefits, three-quarters of employees said they are satisfied or very satisfied with their employers current health plan, with 58% citing the benefit as ‘useful’ in the current situation. Of those who answered in Virginia, 31% said their employer offers health insurance as a part of their benefits package. Washington and California followed closely behind with 22% and 19% offering health insurance, respectively. On the other end of the scale, 1% of respondents in Delaware and 0.6% in North Dakota are offered health insurance, whilst employees in Idaho fall particularly short with just 0.4% being offered the benefit. 

Results also show that COVID-19 has had an interesting effect on decisions surrounding current and future benefits; more than a quarter of employees (26%) admitted that the pandemic has forced them to rethink their current benefit package. Almost a third (31%) of employees had benefits added to their current package during COVID-19, with online fitness classes, well-being apps and telemedicine being top of the list. 

Zenefits is a platform committed to streamlining HR processes, by offering software and services that are purpose built with helping small and midsize businesses in mind. Zenefits provide a wide variety of tools – such as streamlined onboarding and easy PTO tracking to org charts and performance reviews – to help small business owners manage employees, achieving the best and most efficient outcomes for everyone. 

Nadene Evans of Zenefits said, 

“We asked small business owners what more we can offer them and the general consensus was that they needed more insider information to figure out how best to help their employees. It isn’t always effective to simply ask your staff what they want or need, so we decided a survey would be a great way to find out what is most important to business owners and their employees. 

“The survey was incredibly insightful and we have had feedback from both employees and employers expressing how much it has helped them think more critically about what they are being offered and what they can offer. This is definitely a survey topic we’ll be working on again!”

fresher and healthy

Dr Alex George Launches Scape Fresher & Healthy Initiative to Tackle Concerns Over Student Wellbeing This Academic Term

Student living specialists, Scape has launched a new wellbeing initiative with Love Island’s Dr Alex George. The Fresher & Healthy service has been developed to help ensure students are feeling physically and mentally well, and socialising safely, as they start or head back to university life this year.

Scape has teamed up with Love Island’s Dr Alex George, a certified A&E doctor, to offer guidance to students that face uncertainty surrounding their wellbeing due to Covid-19. Dr Alex George has worked with Scape to produce a series of tips and advice to address the main health and wellbeing concerns of students who will be returning to academic life during the pandemic this autumn. The advice will be on offer to students via Scape’s social channels and website this academic term.

As part of the initiative, Scape is providing a new service that will be available to students on a weekly basis from the week of 5th October. This will feature bookable one-on-one health consultations with private GP service, Gogodoc. Students that book a consultation will receive a free physical examination and mental health advice by a general practice doctor. Trusted patient information and reassurance will be given to students as part of the consultation process, as well as advice on the correct course of action or prescription based on their health concerns.  

Along with the consultation, students will be given the option to receive a flu vaccination. They will also receive a free Fresher & Healthy kit packed with essential wellbeing items that can used in and around University, including an Ally face mask, Hande hand sanitiser, a discount on Vitl nutrition supplements and healthy refreshments such as a Equinox Organic Kombucha and Properchips’ Sea Salt Lentil Chips.

Scape’s new Fresher & Healthy initiative strives to make a tangible difference to the wellbeing of its students at a time when university life is somewhat different to how it used to be. The events of the last few months have meant that students are now left with feelings of anxiety and worry regarding their health and social life in the upcoming academic year. Aiming to reassure residents, the new initiative will provide an offering that can help them to overcome the fear that they have towards socialising and being in a new student environment during the pandemic, as well as helping to reduce the risk of ill health among students


Dr Alex George, Fresher & Healthy Celebrity Ambassador, explains:

‘It is vital that students take care of their physical and mental health when they start or go back to University during these unprecedented times.

For the majority of students starting at University, it will be their very first time away from home. In order for them to embrace this change and the uncertainty of this new situation, it is crucial that they are offered the right medical knowledge and health advice to best prepare them for life as a student this year.

Helping young adults to feel safe, by providing them with the correct medical insights and practical health advice, is an area I’m very passionate about personally, and so it’s a pleasure to be working with Scape on this Fresher & Healthy service to help support and protect student wellbeing.’

The initative follows Scape’s recently announced partnership with student mental health charity, Student Minds. This new partnership ensures students and staff at Scape are equipped to help improve mental wellbeing at a time when university life will be somewhat different to how it has been previously.

Scape has also launched a new app that aims to maintain student wellbeing among its residents. The app allows students to directly contact a a residential team member, trained in mental health, for support and help if they are struggling. Once contact has been made by a student, advice and guidance will be provided by one of 65 mental health trained staff and referrals to a psychologist can be made if needed.


Neil Smith, Scape’s Managing Director says:

Empowering students and ensuring their wellbeing has always been at the heart of everything that Scape does. We feel strongly about our responsibility to help and support student’s physical and mental wellbeing, particularly at a time when young people may feel worried about starting or heading back to university.

The start of a new academic term is a crucial period for any student, by offering this new Fresher & Healthy service, we feel confident that we’re providing students with the best pratical health advice, insights and offerings for them to feel relaxed and safe whilst at University and socialising with their peers.’

healthcare us

The Hidden Side of American Healthcare

One of the most common truisms in the modern world is how broken the American healthcare system is. It has been improved considerably because of Obamacare, but the system still languishes behind many other nations in terms of cost and outcomes. One of the biggest reasons for this is the American healthcare system’s focus on the profit motive. Healthcare providers have an incentive to put profits over patients. That mindset leads to a system where patients sometimes get bad results because organizations put money before them.

An Insufficient System

There are many symptoms of the flaws in American healthcare. One of the most significant symptoms is how many people are willing to go without healthcare to save themselves financially. People are apprehensive about going to the hospital because they know it will potentially lead to financial ruin if they don’t have health insurance. What’s more, doctors’ offices must manage financial components of healthcare, which acts as a distraction from providing patient care. Many physicians rely on healthcare contracting solutions to negotiate with insurance companies. These companies are a necessary service working between patients and healthcare providers. They make sure that patients never really feel the full costs of healthcare, and providers never have to show what they are charging to their patients. In doing these things, health insurance companies become the biggest problem in the healthcare system.


How Obamacare Improved Things

The Affordable Care Act was a landmark bill for reforming the healthcare system. While it did some great things, it has not done enough to alleviate the profit motive in the American healthcare system. One thing that it did well was to change the age that children could stay on their parent’s healthcare plans. That change meant a lot of college-aged kids could still get the care they needed by using their parent’s insurance plan. It also provided access to many low-income people who would not be able to get health insurance before. However, the profit motive won out, and Obamacare was not enough to make the American system better for everyone.


Why For-Profit Makes the System Flawed

Money over patients is the main reason why the American healthcare system is flawed. Drug companies have the incentive to charge as much as possible for new medication because they are more beholden to shareholders and not patients. Health insurance companies want to charge as much as possible because they know healthcare is something that people need. Finally, the hospital will charge the maximum amount of money possible to patients looking for treatment. All of these organizations, putting profit first, caused the price of healthcare to balloon to an extreme level. Patients end up dying rather than getting into debt to get the treatment they need. There are people forced to choose between getting life-saving medication and buying food. Tragedies like these are just another symptom of a flawed healthcare system.


Financial Factors Driving Decisions

Until something changes, we will continue to see this system play out in everyday life. Companies and hospitals will continue to try to make as much profit as possible without regard for what patients are going through. This burden will also keep falling to doctors who have to decide between money and lives. This will continue until the way people look at healthcare in America is fundamentally changed. When that happens, we might see a new day of lower costs and more healthcare access for everyone in American society.