The largest study of high-deductible health plans Find savings, less preventive care

There is general agreement that the U.S. health system needs something that reduces costs and maintain quality, said Haviland. But they also discourage families to get preventive care they need.However, in the same period, families who have gone high-deductible health care plans as a significant preventive childhood immunizations, screening and routine tests for diabetes.

The researchers examined the experiences of families provided in 2004 and 2005 by one of the 53 largest employers with about half of employers offering high deductible plan and health of consumers direct. Previous studies have followed the impact of high deductibles, but the evidence is limited experience of some plans and employers.

But families have reduced their medical costs, have eliminated some care is clearly beneficial, the researchers found. While childhood immunization rates increased among families in traditional health plans, fell among families in terms of high-deductible health. Rates of mammography screening for cervical cancer screening, colorectal cancer, and routine blood tests in people with diabetes also decreased in those with high-deductible health plans.

Support for the study were provided by the California HealthCare Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Other authors are Melinda Beeuwkes Buntine, RAND, Roland McDevitt Towers Watson, and Neeraj Sood RAND and the University of Southern California.

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The researchers found that the franchise individual must be high enough to achieve significant savings. Increased costs for families with deductibles in the plans covered moderate – from $ 500 to $ 999 per person – are not significantly different from that of traditional plans. The cost savings did not become important when the series has reached $ 1,000 per person.

RAND Health, a division of the RAND Corporation, is the nation’s largest independent health policy research program, with a broad portfolio of research that focuses on health care costs, quality and preparation of public health, among others topics.

The health assessment found that the largest ever high-deductible plans if those plans to significantly reduce health care costs, but also encourage patients to reduce preventive health care, according to a new RAND Corporation study.

The conclusion on preventive care has implications for the adoption of national health care reform in the United States. According to the law on patient protection, government assistance and affordable health plan to waive deductibles for preventive treatment. The researchers said the new study suggests that this must be clearly communicated to the public to achieve the goal of increasing the level of preventive care received by Americans.

We found that the costs to fall dramatically during the first year people are enrolled in high deductible health plans, provided that the franchise is at least $ 1,000 per person, said Amelia Haviland, a study co-author and a statistician at RAND, a nonprofit research. But we also found the reduction in use of preventive care. This suggests that people reduce the cure is necessary and unnecessary.

Haviland said that while the RAND study is the largest study of high-deductible plans to date, following only family experiences during the first year of enrollment. Different models may emerge in later years.

We have seen that the preventive care of patients reduced, and if it persists, you can have health consequences in the future, said Haviland. These cuts could lead to soaring costs of health care, on the way, if people end up sick and in need of more intensive treatment.

The decline came preventive care, even if high-deductible plans to give up the need to pay a deductible when you receive the necessary treatment. This suggests that students enrolled in high deductible plans or did not understand this part of their political or any other factor that has discouraged to get preventive care, Haviland said.

The RAND study found that the overall costs of health care, higher for those enrolled in plans with both traditional and high-deductible. However, they grew more slowly in the high-deductible group. Among those who have high-deductible health plans with, the costs were lower both inpatient and outpatient services and prescription drugs.

The expenses for emergency care is no different