UHA Health Bolsters Employee-Benefits Package with Student- Loan Repayment Program -Parental Loans Can Even Pay for Child’s Education-
Honolulu, HI (July 18, 2019) – UHA Health Insurance wants to help its employees better plan for the future by helping them put their debts to rest: On July 1, the company began offering student-loan repayment as an employee benefit.
UHA now repays $50 per month as a contribution to each employee who has completed a five-minute registration process of her student loan with the company’s program partner, Peanut Butter.
The program has proven to be immediately popular: On the first day, some 15 percent of the company’s 159 employees had signed up – an astounding figure considering that not all employees have student loans.
“We were concerned about the burden of student loans on our employees and want to support their financial health,” explains Howard Lee, president and CEO of UHA. “In addition, we hope to help mitigate concerns about college affordability for our employees who may be considering going back to school or are paying for their children’s education.”
As with its other employee benefits including Wellness Bucks and Wellness Time, student-loan repayment is not a standard, run-of-themill offering; the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) estimated that only eight percent of U.S. companies were offering loan repayment as of June of this year. UHA is proud to join these innovative companies.
”College graduates feel more financially trapped than ever, but with employer Student Loan Repayment programs, employees have a unique oppourtunity to get a head start, paying loans off years earlier,” says David Aronson, CEO of Peanut Butter. “UHA is already a known wellness leader in its community, and this program takes yet another great step in looking out for the financial wellness of their employees and their employees’ families.”
The benefit will cover both federal and private student loans undertaken by the UHA employee either for her own education or for the employee’s children’s education at the post-secondary level for college or trade schools.
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York reports that student-loan debt now stands at an all-time high of $1.5 trillion as of the first quester of this year. Closer to home, according to a study by the Experian creditreporting service released in June, student-loan debt in Hawai‘i rose 5.8 percent from 2018 to 2019 and 28.7 percent over a five-year period; the average student-loan debt in Hawai‘i is now $35,009.
To help its employees combat these rising figures, UHA also offers a college tuition reimbursement program to all qualifying UHA associates.
For more information, visit uhahealth.com.
About UHA Health Insurance (University Health Alliance)
UHA was founded as University Health Alliance in 1996 by a group of physician faculty at University of Hawai‘i John A. Burns School of Medicine. UHA provides medical, drug and vision plans to more than 4,600 Hawai‘i employer groups and over 60,000 members. As the only health plan in Hawai‘i founded by physicians, it was the first to offer preventive and wellness care focused health plans in the state. It continues to be physician led and now offers one of the largest physician and provider networks in Hawai‘i. By meeting strict quality standards to ensure clinically sound decision-making that respects the rights of patients and medical providers, UHA received accreditation in Health Utilization Management through URAC, the independent nonprofit that promotes healthcare quality.
About Peanut Butter
Peanut Butter helps companies offer Student Loan Assistance as an employee benefit. Leading employers and employees across North America count on Peanut Butter to help them effectively manage student debt through employer contributions and financial resources.
For information, visit getpeanutbutter.com.