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Consumers’ Satisfaction With Coverage Linked To Out-Of-Pocket Expenses
Kaiser Health News

How much money people have to fork over when they go to the doctor can make a big difference in how satisfied they are with their health plan, a recent study suggests.

“It looks like it’s boiling down to costs,” says Paul Fronstin, director of the Employee Benefit Research Institute’s health research and education program and the author of the report.

The annual online survey by EBRI/Greenwald & Associates of 3,887 people examined issues related to consumer-directed health care, generally defined as plans with high deductibles that are linked to savings accounts that consumers can use to pay medical expenses. Study participants were grouped into three categories: consumer-driven health plan members who had a deductible of at least $1,250 for individual coverage or $2,500 for family coverage and access to a health savings account or similar savings vehicle; high-deductible health plan members who had the same deductible thresholds but no savings account; and so-called traditional plan members who had plans with lower deductibles.