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JD Power Health Plan Satisfaction Survey

By March 23, 2016Commentary

Health insurance, especially its cost, has been foremost in consumers’ minds for many years.  JD Power surveyed about 32,000 people in late 2015 in regard to satisfaction with their health plan.  (JD Power Survey)   Six areas are covered in the survey:  coverage and benefits; provider choice; information and communication; claims processing; cost and customer service.  JD Power scores on a 1000 point scale.  Member satisfaction averaged 688 in 2016, up from 679 in 2015 and 669 in 2014.  The main factors driving the improvement were satisfaction with coverage and benefits, information and communication and customer service.  Just to give you a sense of satisfaction with health plans compared to other products or services, wireless phone satisfaction, an area where consumers are demanding, is much higher, and for vacuum cleaners, it is even higher.  Health plan companies have a way to go to create as much satisfaction as a vacuum cleaner does, although they will hoover up your money pretty efficiently.  Interestingly JD Power reports that in areas where there is more competition among health plans, satisfaction scores are higher.   Factors like cost, customer service and information and communication drive this difference.  In areas where one plan has more than a 50% market share, the one factor where members report higher satisfaction is provider choice.   Plan members are most satisfied in California, Michigan and the mid-Atlantic region, and least satisfied in the Southwest and Minnesota-Wisconsin.  UnitedHealth, Anthem and Cigna have the highest rated plan in only one region each, while Aetna and Humana don’t have it in even one.  The highest ratings are earned by integrated delivery system plans like Kaiser, which has the highest rated plan in five of eighteen regions.  Average satisfaction for these plans is 746 compared to only 683 for non-integrated ones.  Just an interesting, slightly different perspective on how consumers feel about their health coverage.

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