Consumer-Driven Health Plans (CDHPs): Are they a Viable Long-Term Solution to Rising Costs in Employer-Sponsored Health Plans? Open Access
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The purpose of this master's thesis is to predict whether CDHPs are a viable long-term solution to the cost crisis facing employer-sponsored health plans. To do this, I will evaluate the current body of data on the success of CDHPs in the employer-sponsored health plan market since their introduction several years ago, and compare those results with the results of a survey of a group of benefits professionals on their experiences with CDHPs. The focus of the analysis is to gauge whether or not CDHPs have been successful in changing consumer behavior and saving employers money in health insurance premiums over time. The results of the analysis will be used to predict the future of CDHP's role in the U.S. employer-sponsored healthcare system. Based on the data published so far from the studies on CDHPs, it is very difficult to make any conclusions regarding what the long-term impact of this newer health insurance model may be over time. The results to date have been fairly mixed, with some pointing to reductions in use of needed care for CDHP participants and others stating no difference between use of needed services between CDHP and non-CDHP participants. The results of my survey show similarly mixed results. While respondents themselves feel mostly positive towards CDHPs, they indicate mixed feelings for employees participating in these plans. Additionally, the survey results show the intended impact on cost and utilization has only been partially realized, or there is not yet enough data to determine results at this point.