January 9, 2013 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - The use of account-based plans and health and wellness programs appear to be effective in motivating employees to take action to better understand and improve their health.
An increasing number of employers offer account-based plans, commonly known as consumer-driven health plans, as a way for consumers to take more responsibility for managing their health and related costs, according to Aon Hewitt’s “The Consumer Health Mindset” survey. Seventy-eight percent of employees currently enrolled in account-based plans report they are satisfied with the plans, and 89% expect to re-enroll in this option for 2013. For workers who have been enrolled in an account-based plan for two or more years, nearly all (97%) plan to re-enroll.
The survey indicates that consumer involvement in account-based plans may correlate to positive health behaviors. Sixty percent of employees who are enrolled in these types of plans say they have made positive behavior changes related to their health. Specifically, 28% say they receive routine preventative care more often, 23% seek lower-cost health care options and 19% research health costs more frequently. When asked if they would participate in a wellness program, the survey found that up to half of consumers said they would participate with no financial incentive as long the program is easy and convenient. Sixty-three percent of consumers say they would complete a health risk questionnaire (HRQ) for a monetary reward, and 62% would participate in a healthy eating or weight management programs. Nearly half (48%) would participate in a medically sponsored program to help them manage a health condition.