A survey of high-deductible health plan users finds that care is more likely to be deferred by enrollees in such plans as opposed to traditional ones, particularly low-income persons, but not for patients with chronic conditions. The survey has weaknesses, including the fact that it does not explore outcomes.
Another excellent report from EBRI regarding consumer-driven health plans finds continued growth and continued evidence that members of these plans appear to be more engaged in their health and health care. The report is based on a survey of about 4700 adults under age 65 with commercial insurance.
The holiday shopping season is in full swing but our Potpourri is free, filled with useful data on high-deductible health plans and utilization, Medicare Advantage plan Stars bonuses, drug complications and hospitalizations, physician office visit trends, premium increases, and patient expectations.
No Potpourri next week due to the holiday, so enjoy this festive collection of health care nuggets, including pay-for-performance in large physician groups, employer views on the effect of the reform law, the effect of physician financial interest in cardiac testing, experience with high deductible plans, medical homes and quality improvement and for-profit and non-for-profit hospital treatment of the uninsured.
Research reported in Health Affairs examines the Mayo Clinic’s experience after increasing cost-sharing for its employees. Reductions in the use of many discretionary services seem to have been sustained over a multi-year period, leading to overall spending restraint.
The Deloitte Center for Health Solutions releases the latest edition of its annual survey of consumers on health issues and health care use. Americans are anxious about the financial effects of health care and think our system is not good, but are generally happy with the care they actually receive.
The leaves fall but not the quality of our Potpourri, this week covering beneficiaries’ use of Medicare Star ratings, quality of care guidelines and older patients, compassionate care, asthma care guidelines and outcomes, infection control in hospitals and informal caregivers in California.