|Access To Physicians Is Consumers’ Highest Priority When Choosing A Health Plan
WellPoint Institute of Health Care Knowledge released
its first study: "Choosing a Health Plan: What Should Consumers Look
Based on responses from more than 100,000 consumers,
employers and industry thought leaders, the breadth of a health
plan’s network is the highest priority when choosing a health
Highlighting the need for consumer engagement, the study
also found that only one-third of consumers were knowledgeable
regarding what services were covered by their current health plan.
"Millions of Americans are in the middle of open
enrollment season, a 6 to 8 week period when employees have the option
to change their health plan," said Sam Nussbaum, chief medical officer,
WellPoint Inc. "As employees become more informed healthcare consumers
and are paying a greaterportion of their overall healthcare costs, it
is especially important for consumers to take a careful look at those
benefits that are of particular value to their healthcare needs,
including pharmacy benefits, wellness and health improvement programs."
According to "Choosing a Health Plan: What Should
Consumers Look For?" the following categories were found to strongly
influence consumers’ overall experiences with their current
health plans and are important factors to consider when choosing a
- Choice of networks and doctors;
- Affordability and health plan value;
- Health and wellness tools and services;
- Health plan communications regarding how to find a doctor or clinic within a network and benefit coverage;
- Access to information on the cost and quality of services and providers; and
- Quality of customer service.
Address: WellPoint, 120 Monument Circle, Indianapolis, IN 46204; (317) 532-6000, www.wellpoint.com.