Justin Donald Leader

Benefits Professional
  • Healthcare Stockholm Syndrome

    Apr 19, 2016

by Justin Leader


Stockholm syndrome, or capture-bonding, is a psychological phenomenon first described in 1973 in which hostages express empathy and sympathy and have positive feelings toward their captors, sometimes to the point of defending and identifying with the captors. These feelings are generally considered irrational in light of the danger or risk endured by the victims, who essentially mistake a lack of abuse from their captors for an act of kindness.

I feel that most employers we meet with suffer from a version of this syndrome.  Every 1/1, 7/1 or (Insert Number)/1, their broker, delivers the same renewal with little to no innovation and the employer, accepting of their yearly fate, nods yes.  I am not sure how many people enjoy saying “Thank you Sir, may I have another?” except Kevin Bacon in National Lampoon’s Animal House.

Why do you think most of us are just so accepting of the “Status Quo”?  I would safely assume that the saying the “Devil you know is better than the Devil you don’t” is the reason why.

The good news is that a major paradigm shift in healthcare is upon us.  The old school mentality of here is your premium increase with no justification as well as the brokers seeing clients once a year at renewal is dying, and soon to be dead.  For those of us disrupting the industry with innovation and avenues to drive down costs through transparency and fiduciary responsibility is good news.  Frankly we could not be happier about this fact.  That being said, it is up to the employers and their leadership to decide whether or not they can justify staying stagnant for much longer.  For most organizations the spend has reached a level where something has got to give.

Are you aware of what is on the horizon as well as what your peers are doing to take immediate action to curb rising cost and unhealthy employees?  Most decisions makers have been kept in the dark as a perpetual whipping boy so that others can stay fat and happy.  The tables are turning thanks to great advocates in the marketplace. They are implementing ideas for the right reasons across the United States.  Unfortunately, the powers that be, will try to keep these gems hidden for as long as possible. However thanks to technology and an upheaval from angry employers/employees, change is happening sooner than later.  I end by quoting the immortal words of Bob Dylan; “The Times They Are a-Changin'”.

– If you would like a copy of our shortlist of fiduciarily responsible providers and partners as well as some of the innovation available to you feel free to contact me! – Justin