There is an excellent blog post on KevinMD.com by Dr. Michael Kirsch entitled, “Fix High-Deductible Health Insurance. But It Won’t Be Easy.”
The Dr. Kirsch’s blog post is so good and brief that it deserves a quick read.
Additionally, www.KevinMD.com is one of the most widely read physician and healthcare blogs on the internet. If you have not visited the site before, it is also worth a visit.
Here are some point’s from Dr. Kirsch’s Blog:
- As a physician in a small practice himself, he and his staff have high-deductible health plans. Traditional lower-deductible PPOs plans are just too expensive.
- Kirsch believes that patients should have some financial responsibility for their care to prevent over-diagnosis and over-treatment.
- To quote the blog: “It’s easy for doctors to order tests that cost them nothing. It’s easy for patients to accept tests that cost them nothing.”
- A final quote from the blog: “It’s easier to spend someone else’s money.”
As employee benefits professionals, we often hear healthcare consumers and healthcare providers lament the growth in popularity of high-deductible health plans. It’s important to realize that there are many physicians like Dr. Kirsch who have a different point-of-view.
Many, including Dr. Kirsch, recognize the problem of high-deductible health plans as well: many people cannot afford care under their, say, $5,000 deductible. It’s almost the equivalent of having no insurance at all…the rationale sometimes goes.
In my opinion, off-setting deductible expenses with a HSA or HRA is a solution—not a perfect solution—but a solution none-the-less. Better to use pre-tax dollars to pay for healthcare. For more information about HSA and HRA, check out this previous post on the HRA and HSA Funding Statistics.
To learn how Compass helps employees at over 2,200 companies navigate their high-deductible health plans, please watch this video: