Michigan’s Solution for Better Health Benefits in the New Healthcare Economy

Michigan’s Solution for Better Health Benefits in the New Healthcare Economy

Michigan’s Solution for Better Health Benefits in the New Healthcare Economy 628 276 Apostrophe Health

Now is the time for Michigan’s self-insured plan sponsors to reconsider the value of your health plans.

Right now, an opportunity exists to take back control of healthcare costs, embrace innovation and improve the overall quality of care in Michigan. We believe this is a time for optimism. When we can all finally return to the doctor, Apostrophe members will do so with confidence knowing our smart shopper program is saving them money.

When we talk about the future of healthcare, we anticipate a substantial period of recovery in which providers will seek to recoup losses. To do so, cost of care and treatment will increase and legacy insurance rates will rise in response. 

Michiganders are paying 169%* over Medicare rates for their healthcare.

Compared to mark-up rates across the country, this is a relatively low number — but it’s just an average. Consider Michigan’s average mark-ups** for these common services:

Radiology – 260% mark-up

Colonoscopy – 177% mark-up

It’s too soon to know what will happen to that rate as part of the post-COVID recovery. Are you prepared for an expected increase in healthcare costs? 

Apostrophe Intelligent Health Benefits are uniquely positioned to take on this challenge and put our self-insured plan sponsors ahead of the “what’s next” curve. 


Apostrophe’s Intelligent Health Benefits put the self-funded plan sponsor back in control of spend and experience.

We took the direct-purchase plans modeled by Lowe’s and Boeing and made them accessible to mid-size, self-insured plan sponsors. It’s no longer a luxury reserved for the biggest corporate players. It’s a necessity your members deserve.

With Apostrophe, your members enjoy better benefits for less money. Intelligent Health Benefits include:

  • All providers treated as in-network. We eliminated confusing rules and penalties.
  • Cut out middlemen with common sense purchasing. Save with direct contracts, cash pay, and referenced-based payments.
  • Smart shopper and $0 care options. Members save on out-of-pocket expenses by choosing our partner providers.
  • White glove Member Care. Advocacy and expert support to navigate the healthcare system.


When health systems and private physician practices re-open, they’ll work to quickly overcome the financial losses incurred during the closure. Their patients will pay for it. Apostrophe Members won’t feel that strain, though, with smart shopper rates insulating them from any reactionary rate hikes.

In fact, we expect these rate increases to change member behavior for the better:

  • Greater reliance on Apostrophe’s existing suite of virtual healthcare tools
  • Shopping around for the best treatment and care options
  • Cost-conscious decision making

Apostrophe smart shopper program enables our members to be more informed, smarter healthcare consumers. This is what Better Benefits for Less Money looks like in action.

The process of researching providers and fair rates against benefit availability can be overwhelming. But when our members need a procedure or treatment outside of standard office visits, Apostrophe smart shopper helps them identify high-quality and cost-effective options right here in Michigan. The advocacy of white glove Member Care ensures that our members feel supported and informed when making healthcare decisions. 

Apostrophe smart shopper is available for:

  • MRI or CT at free-standing imaging centers
  • Colonoscopies
  • Outpatient or elective surgery
  • Musculoskeletal pain management, e.g. virtual physical therapy

Both HSA and non-HSA plans get the benefit of bundled case rates. Non-HSA plans have access to $0 member cost benefits, and HSA plans may have opportunities for account credits.***


In 2005, small employers saw premium increases and rate adjustments by the biggest insurance player in the market. The effect was not surprising: employers reduced benefits and increased employees’ premiums, copays and deductibles. Compared to the rest of the nation, Michigan’s healthcare markets have been slower to evolve than other states.

Workers here pay more than they should for healthcare because no one is challenging regional carriers and providers. Health insurance increases continue to outpace inflation and wage increases. Those wages earned by hard-working Michiganders? They’ve still yet to rebound to their pre-recession value. And now, Michigan has entered a new recession.

“The high cost of health care can be a barrier to access for both insured people (particularly those with high deductibles) and the uninsured, and costs can be particularly burdensome for people in worse health,” reported the Peterson-KFF Health System Tracker.

Without access to affordable care, it stands to reason that Michiganders fall below national averages for wellness and health. The state ranks 35th for life expectancy and has some of the highest mortality rates for heart disease and cancer in the U.S.

Consider that this was all the state of things before the pandemic. There’s no way to know how soon Michigan will rebound to this normal or if things will continue to decline.

Every year, your fund renews its legacy healthcare plan with worse benefits for more money. With each renewal, you’re perpetuating a broken system that the members pay for. 

Now is the time to change everything with better benefits for less money.

If you’re a self-insured plan sponsor in Michigan, we’d like to calculate the savings you’ll see when you switch to Apostrophe Intelligent Health Benefits.

Let’s talk before your next renewal.

*2019 Rand Report
** 2019 Wakely Benchmarks Report
***depending on plan design