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WHAT IS A CONSUMER-DRIVEN HEALTH PLAN?

Due to the rising cost of health care and new regulations, employers that offer health insurance are difficult to control costs. Although they want to provide high quality health plans, keeping the cost of these affordable plans is difficult. Many employees do not understand the true cost of health care and are not encouraged to help reduce costs. Because of this, many employers are moving part of the responsibility and health risks to employees. This is where health plans the consumer-oriented come in.

the consumer-driven health plans, also known as CDHPs are health plans that give consumers more control over how and where the money from their health care are spent. They usually consist of three parts. The first element of a consumer-driven health plan is a high deductible. It provides financial security in case of serious illness, while preventive care services are usually provided at low cost. The second element is a health fund where employees and employers can contribute. The insured may use the funds for health care services before the deductible is met. Finally, the consumer-focused health plans provide information tools to help policyholders to make better choices in health care.

While consumer-focused health plans are structured differently than traditional health plans, they basically work the same. The insured must satisfy their deductible. To meet the deductible, the insured pays a negotiated price for each medical service until they reach the designated amount. The insured can also use the funds in their account of health care to help pay for services until the deductible is reached. Once the deductible is met, the insurance company and the insured share part of the cost of covered medical services. The insured and insurance company will continue to share the costs of medical services until it hits the maximum out of pocket. Once the insured has reached the maximum of his pocket, the plan will pay all medical costs for the rest of the year.

While consumer-focused health plans are new medical plans, many employers choose to offer these plans to their employees. They still allow employers to quality health care plans, but at a fraction of the cost. They also help employees get involved in their health care and take responsibility for their health. No matter what people may have opinion about them, it seems that the consumer-focused health plans are here to stay.

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