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New EBRI/Commonwealth Fund Research: Enrollment in Consumer-Driven Plans Remains Low, Survey Shows
Date:3/18/2008

he Issue Brief. "Employers, especially large employers, appear to be increasingly providing the plans as an option, but enrollment has yet to take off."

"These findings show that over the three years of the survey, more people in consumer-driven plans are earning higher incomes, tend to be healthier, and are no more likely to have been uninsured prior to enrolling than people in traditional health plans," said co-author Sara Collins of the Commonwealth Fund. "These plans are not yet solving the problems they set out to address."

The survey produced these additional findings:

-- Seven percent of consumer-driven enrollees were uninsured before being covered by their current plan, compared with 15 percent among high-deductible enrollees and 28 percent among individuals with comprehensive coverage.

-- Adults in consumer-driven plans are significantly more likely to consider costs in deciding about health care than those in more comprehensive plans, but the differences are not substantial.

-- There have not been significant gains in the amount of information on provider cost and quality given to enrollees by health plans of any type over the three years of the survey.

-- Among the 12.5 million individuals with a high-deductible plan, 42 percent, or 5.2 million, reported that they were eligible for a tax-advantaged health savings account but did not have such an account.

-- Individuals in consumer-driven and high-deductible plans reported using health services at rates similar to those in comprehensive plans, and there were no reported differences in the use of preventive screens or tests. However, as in earlier years, the survey finds that people in consumer-driven and high-deductible plans are more likely to skimp on needed medical care or medications because of cost than are those in more comprehensive plans. Over 2005-2007, the reported rates of cost-related problems dropped among adults in consumer-driv
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SOURCE Employee Benefit Research Institute
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