Saturday, June 13, 2009

HSA Plans

NYT Article:
The investment firm Fidelity recently surveyed employees at various companies who had opted for a high-deductible health plan linked to a health savings account. About half of those workers said they or a family member had chosen not to seek medical care for minor ailments as many as four times in the last year to avoid paying the out-of-pocket expenses.
And they call this "Consumer-Driven Healthcare"?! Now, I'm not saying this is all bad. I am definitely in favor of the concept, at least in theory, of exposing consumers to more of the costs of health care. In my own family, we have seen a number of times when we held off going to the doctor by a day or three, for some relatively minor thing, and it wound up clearing up on its own. So definitely some efficiency there. But please, let's be clear--consumers are not voluntarily "driving" this change. Calling HSA plans "consumer driven" is a classic example of corporate-speak.

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