In the face of another year of economic volatility and legislative and regulatory change,
"The growth of consumer-driven health plans continues because they help customers reduce their health risks and improve the quality and efficiency of their care, which result in lowering their total medical costs," said
Released recently, the Seventh Annual Cigna Choice Fund Experience Study compares the actual claims experience of more than 2.5 million
According to the study, when compared to customers in traditional PPO and HMO plans, those in a CDHP:
-Lowered their health risks: Cigna CDHP customers lowered their risk of developing or worsening a chronic condition. According to the study, when employers fully transitioned to offering only a CDHP option, individuals improved their health risk profile by 12 percent in the first year compared to customers in a traditional plan.
-Reduced total medical costs: Cigna CDHP medical cost trend was 13 percent lower than traditional plans during the first year: costs were 20 percent lower for HSA customers and 11 percent lower for HRA participants. Cost reductions were achieved without employers shifting out-of-pocket health expenses to their employees. Notably 75 percent of HSA customers contribute more to their accounts than they spend.
-More engaged in health improvement: Cigna CDHP customers were twice as likely to complete a health risk assessment and CDHP customers with a chronic illness are up to 25 percent more likely to participate in a disease management program than those enrolled in a traditional plan.
-Were more likely to compare cost and quality: Cigna CDHP customers were 59 percent more likely to use the directory to access cost and procedure information to help them review potential medical costs.
-Were more savvy consumers of health care: Customers with
-Received higher levels of care: Cigna CDHP customers had consistent or higher compliance with over 300 evidenced-based medical best practices than their counterparts in traditional plans. Cigna CDHP customers also sought preventive care, such as annual office visits and mammograms, more frequently than customers enrolled in a traditional plan.
"While we just completed our first year under the new plan, we've seen many people taking steps to monitor and improve their health, including receiving age- and gender-appropriate preventive care screenings at rates above industry averages, increased visits to a primary care physician, good usage of Wellness Screenings where 14 percent of those screened learned about a health risk for the first time, and increased usage of generic medications," Roehrig said. "We feel providing appropriate access to quality health care providers, information regarding the quality and cost of those various providers, and appropriate health and condition management coaching programs are important components to our success. Incentives and communications are used to encourage our employees to better understand their options and make decisions that are right for them and their families."
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