|BCBSA Survey Finds CDHP Consumers Are More Health And Cost Conscious
People enrolled in consumer-directed health plans (CDHP)
are more likely to budget for healthcare costs and participate in
health and wellness programs, according to survey results released by
the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA).
The industry-wide BCBSA 2008 "CDHP Member Experience
Survey" also found that CDHP enrollees are 30 percent more likely to
track their health expenses than those in more traditional health
insurance plans and 27 percent more likely to ask their doctors about
the cost of treatment.
When it comes to health and wellness, CDHP enrollees
appear more engaged and proactive in preventive health measures. The
survey found they are slightly more likely to have regular checkups,
physicals and preventive screenings than non-CDHP enrollees. CDHP
consumers are also more likely than people in traditional health plans
to participate in health and wellness programs, including disease
management, health coaching, nutrition and diet, smoking cessation,
stress management and exercise.
"Consumers are demonstrating more active engagement in
their own healthcare than are non-CDHP consumers, as evidenced by an
increased use of health and wellness programs and better tracking,
estimating and budgeting for healthcare costs," said Maureen Sullivan,
senior vice president, Strategic Services at BCBSA.
"These innovative offerings not only enhance consumer
choice and participation, but they help promote health and wellness by
encouraging consumers to take a vigorous role in their health and
Collectively, the 39 independent Blue Cross and Blue
Shield companies serve 4.4 million CDHP members – up 50 percent
from last year. Of these, 2.9 million are covered by health savings
account (HSA)-qualified plans and 1.5 million are members in health
reimbursement arrangements (HRAs).
Sullivan said that to continue to grow the number of
people enrolled in CDHPs, as well as the number of CDHP enrollees who
ultimately open HSAs or HRAs, health plans and employers must continue
to work together to share information with consumers on how they can
best use CDHPs.
"While there still is a lot of education that needs to
be done to make consumers aware of the best way to utilize these
products, the substantial enrollment growth and the findings on CDHP
consumerbehavior tells us that CDHPs are helping to create incentives
for consumer engagement," she said.
The survey, conducted by BCBSA, collected information
from 2,791 people aged 18-64 with private health insurance coverage,
including Blue Cross and Blue Shield CDHPs, non-Blue CDHPs and non-CDHP
Address: Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, 225 North Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60601; (312) 297-6000, www.bcbs.com.