Consumer-Driven Health Plans: New Developments and the Long Road Ahead

Lots of Promise but also Some Serious Problems


The continued rise in U.S. healthcare spending, along with growth in the number of uninsured, has spurred the move toward consumer-driven health plans. We review new legislation covering such plans, analyze their penetration in the marketplace, and predict their growth. We also use current information about plans that are compatible with Health Savings Accounts to compare them to traditional Preferred Provider Organization plans. Next, we discuss some concerns about the impact of these plans on vulnerable populations, such as the poor and sick. Finally, we suggest how consumer-driven health plans may help to improve the functioning of the healthcare market, especially by producing more transparent information on cost and quality.

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Scheffler, R., Felton, M. Consumer-Driven Health Plans: New Developments and the Long Road Ahead. Bus Econ 41, 44–48 (2006).

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  • consumer
  • health
  • insurance
  • choice
  • care

JEL Classifications

  • I110, I180