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Brokers provide access to knowledgeable and experienced advocates who can help employees shop for their health care. (Photo: Getty)

In a continuing effort to stem the tide of rising health care costs over the years, employers have increasingly asked employees and their families to take a more active role in their health care. With the advent of consumer-directed/high-deductible health plans and their associated accounts — health savings accounts (HSAs) or health reimbursement accounts (HRAs) — has come a growing expectation that, as employees are asked to shoulder more of the cost of their care, they will become more thoughtful about how and when they use their coverage.

Unfortunately, this expectation has generally not been met.

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