As efforts to reconstruct how our country manages health care have come to a standstill in D.C., American companies are increasingly becoming a safe harbor in a never-ending political storm. With government investment in health care and choice in individual markets in danger of dwindling, employer-sponsored health benefits are not only becoming people's best bet for reliable health coverage, but the foreground for driving innovation in health care.

American companies are not new to the task — they provide health coverage for approximately 172 million Americans and spend more than $1.2 trillion on health benefits annually. As employers brace for the cost of providing medical and pharmacy benefits to rise 5% for the fifth consecutive year in 2018, a recent study of large employers conducted by NBGH reveals many benefits teams are increasingly relying on innovative models and products to contain costs and increase the quality of care.

These advances shouldn't be reserved for large employers. Here are three actionable principles that will help any company — regardless of size or stage of benefits strategy — maximize the ROI of their health care spending and produce results that help drive their workforce strategy forward.

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