CMS Research on the Uninsured

By March 25, 2013Commentary

CMS is doing some market research for the companies that will be selling to or servicing the newly insured under the reform law, including those who may be purchasing through exchanges.   (CMS Paper)  Seems like an odd role for them, but I am sure with the concern about what will happen when reform really hits home, they wanted to see if they could do whatever might help it be successful.  The basic thrust of the presentation is segmentation of the potentially newly insured and how to address the various subgroups.  Of the uninsured population, about 48 million people, over half are under the age of 35, over half are at 138% of poverty level or below in terms of income, 55% are male and the majority are minorities, with almost a third being Hispanic.  There is a wide geographic diversity in number and percent of uninsured.  Surprisingly, 75% are full-time workers in a family.  Only 11% completed college and almost 16% have no English speaking adult in the household.  CMS goes on to use a six-bucket lifestyle and psychographic approach to segment the group.  These buckets are Informed, Healthy & Educated; Sick, Active & Worried; Mature and Secure; Healthy & Young; Passive & Unengaged; and Vulnerable & Unengaged.  In terms of the uninsured, about 48% are Healthy & Young; 29% are Sick, Active & Worried and 15% are Passive & Unengaged.  CMS goes on to suggest the major concerns of each bucket and how they might be reached with marketing.  While it is kind of weird that our tax dollars are being spent in this manner, the research is interesting.

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