Survey Indicates Employees Warming Up to CDHPs

September 12, 2007 ( - A new survey from Aon Consulting Worldwide indicates employee fears about enrolling in consumer-driven health plans (CDHPs) have decreased, as 54% of respondents cited concerns about high out-of-pocket costs as the principal reason for not enrolling in a CDHP, compared to 66% who said the same in 2006.

Sixty percent of employers have more than 10% of their employees participating in a CDHP, up from 53% in 2006, Aon said in a press release. The nationwide survey of 470 employers found employers are warming up to CDHPs as well, with 37% offering this plan type to employees, up from 28% in 2006 and 22% in 2005.

The survey found 83% of employers offer a CDHP in addition to other health care plans and the remaining 17% offer CDHPs in lieu of more traditional health plans, according to the press release. The main drivers behind employers offering CDHPs are to introduce consumerism into the purchasing of health care for long-term change (47%) and to control rising health care costs (33%).

Forty-two percent of employers are using health reimbursement arrangements (HRA), 48% are using health savings accounts (HSA) and 10% are offering both. Of the employers offering an HSA, 67% contribute either a flat dollar amount of less than $500 per person (17%), contribute $500 or more (40%), or match employee contributions (10%).

Other key survey findings included:

  • 42% of employers without a CDHP said they are planning to offer one in the future.
  • 77% of employers indicated they believe employee meetings are the most effective method of communicating about CDHPs to employees.
  • 49% said they believe CDHPs make employees better, more efficient consumers of health care, but 27% believe they lead employees to forego needed health care to save money and 5% believe they have no effect on employee health care purchasing.
  • 39% of employers said CDHPs will be successful in controlling employers’ health care costs in five years; 27% do not believe they will; and 33% said they do not know.