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Year-End Medical Plan: Best Strategies for Employee Well-Being

    Last updated on December 30th, 2023 at 06:54 pm

    Looking for a Last-Minute Year End Medical Plan? The end of the year is a pivotal time for individuals with health insurance plans. As 2023 draws to a close, there’s a unique opportunity to assess, utilize, and optimize your medical plan for maximum benefit. This in-depth guide will delve into essential strategies to help you navigate your year-end medical plan effectively.

    All owners of small businesses with a staff size ranging from one to 49 employees should consider having a medical plan for their company. While it’s true that businesses of this size are not legally mandated by tax laws to have a medical plan, it’s still a wise decision to implement one.

    Join us as we explore the latest trends, innovative solutions, and proven strategies to elevate your company’s healthcare offerings. By the end of this guide, you’ll be well-equipped to make informed decisions that not only benefit your employees’ health but also contribute to a thriving and resilient workplace. Let’s embark on this journey together to ensure a healthier and more prosperous future for your workforce in the coming year.

    Last minutes year end medical plan strategy

    The tax rules associated with medical plans are generally more straightforward for businesses with fewer than 50 employees. Here are six key opportunities for small business owners to explore in this context:

    Last Minutes Year End Medical Plan for 2024

    Federal Tax Credits for Leave Payments:

    If you haven’t already claimed federal tax credits for emergency sick leave and family leave payments made in 2020 (required) and 2021 (voluntary), you should consider amending your tax returns to claim these credits. These payments often qualify for 100 percent credit.

    Section 105 Plan Reimbursements:

    If your business has a Section 105 plan but hasn’t been conducting monthly reimbursements for expenses, you should do so now to secure your deductions for 2023. After this, it’s advisable to set up a monthly reimbursement schedule starting in 2024.

    Qualified Small Employer Health Reimbursement Arrangement (QSEHRA):

    If you plan to implement a QSEHRA and haven’t done so yet, it’s important to get this arranged promptly. A delay in implementation could result in a penalty of $50 per employee.

    Individual Coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangement (ICHRA)

    If you’re considering a QSEHRA, you might want to look into the ICHRA as an alternative. The ICHRA can offer more benefits in terms of the amount of money and flexibility available for your employees.

    Health Insurance Deductions for S Corporations:

    If you run your business as an S corporation and are looking for an above-the-line tax deduction for your health insurance costs, ensure that the corporation either pays for or reimburses you for your health insurance. Additionally, this insurance cost should be reported on your W-2 form. Make sure these reimbursements are processed before December 31 and properly reflected on the W-2.

    Tax Credit for Providing Group Health Insurance:

    If your business offers group health insurance to employees, check if your payment structure and employee count qualify you for a tax credit. Depending on these factors, you may be eligible for a tax credit of up to 50 percent for the health insurance premiums paid in 2023 and possibly for previous years as well.

    Implementing these strategies can offer significant tax advantages and benefits, both for the business and its employees. Read more about the year-end tax planning strategies to cut your bill.

    Deep Dive into Your Medical Plan: A Prerequisite

    Start by thoroughly reviewing your current medical plan. Understanding the fine print – deductibles, premiums, copayments, out-of-pocket maximums, and coverage limits – is essential. This knowledge forms the basis for making informed decisions in the crucial last weeks of the year.

    Last minutes year end medical plan tips

    1. Maximizing Unused Benefits

    • Routine Check-ups and Screenings: Many insurance plans cover annual physicals, dental cleanings, eye exams, and other preventive care services. If you haven’t utilized these, schedule appointments immediately.
    • Mental Health Services: With the increasing focus on mental well-being, check if your plan covers counselling or therapy sessions and consider setting up appointments.

    2. Strategic Planning for Medical Procedures

    • Elective Surgeries: If your deductible is already met, planning elective surgeries now can be cost-effective. This includes procedures like LASIK, knee replacements, or cosmetic surgeries not covered in the next year’s plan.
    • Specialist Consultations: For those managing chronic conditions, end-of-year specialist visits can ensure that your treatment plan is on track and adjust medications if necessary.

    3. Prescription Medication Management

    • Review and Stock Up: Examine your prescription plan. If you’ve reached your deductible, now is the time to refill prescriptions, especially for chronic medications.
    • Generic vs. Brand-Name Drugs: Discuss with your healthcare provider about switching to generic medications, which can be more cost-effective.

    4. Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs)

    • Expiring Funds: Check the expiration of your FSA funds. Use these for eligible expenses like medical equipment (blood pressure monitors, first-aid kits), chiropractic services, or acupuncture.
    • Over-the-Counter Purchases: Remember that many over-the-counter products like pain relievers, allergy medications, and even sunscreen can be FSA-eligible.

    5. Health Savings Account (HSA) Contributions: A Tax-Smart Strategy

    • Maximizing Contributions: If you haven’t reached your HSA contribution limit, consider adding more to reap tax benefits. These contributions reduce your taxable income and can be used tax-free for qualified medical expenses.

    6. Preparing for Next Year’s Plan

    • Open Enrollment Considerations: Evaluate your healthcare needs and financial changes. If your health situation has evolved, consider plans offering different coverage or lower premiums.
    • Family Changes: If there have been or will be changes in your family, like a new baby or a dependent ageing out, adjust your plan accordingly.

    7. Embracing Preventive Healthcare

    • Vaccinations and Screenings: Utilize covered services like flu shots, cancer screenings, and blood pressure checks. These services are critical for preventive care and can avert more serious health issues down the line.

    8. The Rise of Telehealth: A Convenient Alternative

    • Accessibility and Convenience: Explore telehealth options for non-emergency consultations. This can be particularly beneficial for mental health services or routine follow-ups.

    9. Analyzing Out-of-Network Options

    • Understanding Coverage Limits: If you require services from out-of-network providers, understand how your plan covers these expenses. Some plans offer partial reimbursement, which can be valuable for specialized treatments not available in-network.
    • Negotiating Costs: For out-of-network services, consider negotiating the cost with the provider. Many are willing to offer reduced rates for upfront or cash payments.

    10. Mental Health and Wellness Programs

    • Wellness Benefits: Look into wellness benefits that may be part of your plan, such as gym memberships, weight loss programs, or smoking cessation support. Utilizing these can enhance your overall health and potentially reduce future medical costs.
    • Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs): Explore the available services if your employer offers an EAP. These often include short-term counseling, legal advice, and stress management programs, which can be beneficial during the hectic year-end period.

    11. Charitable Health Contributions

    • Donating to Health Charities: Consider making charitable contributions to health-related organizations. While not directly a part of your medical plan, such contributions can be tax-deductible and support broader health initiatives.
    • Gift of Health: Explore options for gifting health benefits, like contributing to a loved one’s HSA, which can be a meaningful way to support others’ health needs.

    12. Keeping Up with Policy Changes

    • Staying Informed: Healthcare policies and benefits can change annually. Stay informed about any new regulations or changes in healthcare laws that could affect your benefits in the upcoming year.
    • Insurance Provider Communications: Regularly check for communications from your insurance provider about policy updates, new benefits, or changes in coverage that will take effect in the new year.

    13. Digital Health Management

    • Leveraging Health Apps: Many insurance providers offer mobile apps or online portals for managing your healthcare. These can be powerful tools for tracking your spending, finding in-network providers, and accessing telehealth services.
    • Health Records Management: Keep a record of all your medical receipts, prescriptions, and healthcare expenses. This organization can be invaluable for tax purposes and for managing your overall healthcare budget.

    You may also love to read- are you missing out on savings with your CPA?

    Last minutes medical plan at the year end

    Last Minutes Year End Medical Plan: FAQs

    • Can I carry over unused funds in my Flexible Spending Account (FSA) to the next year?

    The last-minute year-end medical plan depends on your specific FSA plan. Some plans allow you to carry over a limited amount of unused funds to the next year, while others might offer a grace period to use these funds early in the new year. However, many FSAs operate on a “use it or lose it” policy, meaning any unspent funds by the end of the year are forfeited. Check your plan details or consult with your HR department for specific rules.

    • How can I maximize my Health Savings Account (HSA) contributions?

    To maximize your HSA, ensure you contribute up to the legal limit before the year-end. These contributions are tax-deductible, reducing your taxable income. Funds in your HSA roll over from year to year, so you don’t need to spend them by the end of the year. They can be used for qualified medical expenses anytime in the future.

    • What should I do if I haven’t met my deductible yet?

    If you haven’t met your deductible and don’t anticipate any major medical expenses, it might be more cost-effective to defer elective procedures until next year, when you can apply those expenses toward your new deductible. However, if you are close to meeting your deductible, consider scheduling necessary treatments or check-ups to take advantage of lower out-of-pocket costs.

    • Are there any strategies for managing prescription costs at year-end?

    You can manage prescription costs by checking if you’ve reached your prescription plan’s out-of-pocket maximum. If so, stock up on necessary medications before the year ends. Also, discuss with your doctor about switching to generic medications, which are often significantly cheaper than brand-name drugs.

    • How do I know if I should switch my health plan during open enrollment?

    Consider switching your health plan if your healthcare needs have changed, if you’re not satisfied with your current plan’s coverage or cost, or if there are better options available that match your healthcare requirements and financial situation. Review and compare the benefits, costs, and coverage of different plans before making a decision.

    • Can telehealth services help me maximize my medical plan?

    Yes, telehealth services can be an effective way to maximize your plan, especially if they are covered under your insurance. They offer convenient access to healthcare professionals and can be a cost-effective alternative for non-emergency consultations.

    • What are some year-end strategies for those with chronic health conditions?

    For chronic conditions, ensure that all your routine check-ups and tests are up to date. Stock up on necessary medications and consider scheduling any specialist visits before the year ends, especially if you’ve already met your deductible. Also, review your plan to ensure it continues to meet your needs for the upcoming year.


    As you wrap up 2023, last minute year end medical plan is important. Remember that a proactive approach to managing your medical plan can lead to significant financial and health benefits. By carefully reviewing and utilizing the available options, you ensure that you are fully leveraging the potential of your health insurance.

    While these strategies offer a comprehensive guide, always consider consulting with a healthcare professional or a financial advisor for advice tailored to your specific circumstances. Here’s to a healthier, more financially savvy you in the new year!

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    John Gonzales

    John Gonzales

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