New Research from Alegeus Technologies Reveals that Consumers Enrolled in Consumer Directed Healthcare Plans Are Nearly 50% More Likely to Research & Compare Costs for Healthcare Products & Services
Published on April 22nd, 2015
Alegeus Technologies,the market leader in consumer directed healthcare solutions, today announced the release of new consumer research that highlights the impact of account-based consumer directed healthcare programs in increasing consumer engagement with their healthcare. The study, commissioned by Alegeus and administered by a third party research firm, surveyed 5,000 U.S. consumers across all geographic, demographic, socioeconomic, and psychographic segments – analyzing numerous dimensions of consumers’ healthcare characteristics, attitudes, and behaviors. The survey revealed an overall lack of engagement by U.S. healthcare consumers:
- The majority of consumers do not play an active role in healthcare decision-making today. Only 50% of consumers profess to want to play an active role in their healthcare. Less than half regularly do things like researching treatment options, quality ratings and success rates, seeking second opinions, consulting with peers, or comparing costs. A third never do any of those things.
- The majority of consumers do not play an active role in healthcare decision-Benefit service providers are not doing an effective job of engaging with today’s healthcare consumers. When asked about their interactions with health insurance carriers, benefit administrators and healthcare providers, less than a third of consumers have interacted in meaningful ways – such as visiting online portals, calling customer service lines, subscribing to updates, downloading mobile applications – and 43% have done none of these things.
- The majority of consumers do not play an active role in healthcare decision-Healthcare costs and coverage are still not widely understood. Nearly half of consumers don’t know what their healthcare costs will be this year, and 45% don’t understand what their insurance plan covers. Two thirds are not confident they are paying the right amount when they pay – and 56% learn the costs of healthcare services after the fact.
- The majority of consumers do not play an active role in healthcare decision-Individuals are still learning to be savvy healthcare consumers. When “shopping” for healthcare services, very few are displaying true “consumer” behavior – such as checking for coverage, comparing costs, and seeking less expensive alternatives. Only 32% claim to compare costs.
One particular segment of consumers was found to be much more engaged. Consumer directed healthcare participants – those enrolled in high deductible health plans and account-based programs (such as HSAs, FSAs and HRAs) – scored universally higher than those enrolled in traditional healthcare plans in virtually all aspects of engagement – including being nearly 50% more likely to research and compare costs for healthcare purchases. They are also a third more likely to engage with their benefit service providers, considerably more fluent with healthcare coverage and medical billing, and twice as likely to participate in organized wellness activities.
“The healthcare industry is shifting towards individual responsibility for healthcare costs. Consumers will require substantial support to manage their ever-growing financial responsibilities – as they learn how to become savvy healthcare consumers,” said Steve Auerbach, Alegeus CEO. “These survey results highlight the fact that the industry still has a long way to go, but offers hope that account-based consumer directed healthcare programs – coupled with smart consumer engagement strategies – have great potential to positively influence consumer behavior, increase accountability, and drive more responsible healthcare consumption.”
As the industry leader in consumer directed healthcare technology, now supporting more than 26 million consumers on its platform, Alegeus is at the forefront of the industry in developing innovative consumer engagement tools and resources to help consumers optimize their healthcare spending and maximize their healthcare saving. From interactive analytics, proprietary consumer segmentation models, personalized spend/save recommendations, unique savings and incentive programs, transparency tools, leading mobile and interactive tools, and beyond – Alegeus is delivering innovative solutions to help its clients differentiate and win in an increasingly consumer directed healthcare market.
With more than 25 years of growth and innovation, Alegeus is the market leader in SaaS-based healthcare payment solutions. Our highly flexible, white-label platform powers account-based benefit programs such as HSAs, FSAs, HRAs, COBRA, wellness incentives, lifestyle benefits and beyond. We deliver exceptional user experiences and differentiated capabilities that help our partners strengthen their product offerings, operate more efficiently, and unlock their full growth potential. Our partnerships with the industry’s leading health plans, third-party administrators, financial services and benefit solution providers give Alegeus unparalleled reach in the market, with access to more than 100 million commercially insured Americans. And our unique partnership model empowers our clients to achieve outsized results – growing their programs at a rate that is 3-4X the market, and with the highest net promoter scores (NPS) in the industry. We never compete with our clients in the market – we win when they win. Alegeus is headquartered in Waltham, Mass., with operations centers in Orlando and Bangalore, and a large remote workforce.