Customer Service Ranks Most Important in Healthcare Survey

November 27, 2001 ( - Health plan participants rate problem-solving ability as the most important customer service issue, when determining health plan satisfaction, a new survey found.

The JD Power and Associates 2001 Managed Care Satisfaction Study also found that affordable access to medication is key to satisfaction with the pharmacy benefit.
According to the study:

· more than one-half of all managed care members surveyed are highly satisfied, and,
· 74% of all plan members intend to re-enroll in their current health plan

The most important reasons why HMO members joined their plan were:

· it offered the best value for the money, and
· they were already using a doctor available through the plan

For POS members, the study found the top two reasons for joining were the same as for HMO members, with already having their doctor in the network being most important.

The study also assessed adequacy of care for 14 medical conditions including:

· cholesterol lowering,
· hypertension,
· arthritis, diabetes,
· allergy and asthma

In most cases, health plan members who are highly satisfied with the care they receive for their condition are more likely to be satisfied with their plan and have higher intentions to re-enroll.

Information for the study was compiled from over 32,000 commercial health plan members enrolled in more than 200 national and regional plans.