NU Online News Service, July 15, 11:20 a.m. ? A national survey of 1,000 insured consumers under the age of 65 indicated the possibility that HMOs may be narrowing a perceived satisfaction gap versus other types of health plans.

The survey, conducted by DSS Research, Arlington, Tex., a health care information consultancy, ranked HMOs lower than other health plans in terms of overall satisfaction, problem resolution and overall quality of care. However, the slight differences between the two groups suggests that HMOs might be increasing their satisfaction standing among consumers.

“These numbers show the general satisfaction numbers for the various types of plans as high, with HMOs just slightly behind in benchmarks like value, likelihood to recommend and overall satisfaction,” says Roger Gates, president of DSS.

Other findings from the survey include:

  • 55% of HMO consumers gave their plans top ratings on the satisfaction scale, 5% less than the number of PPO and Indemnity consumers who indicated the highest levels of satisfaction on their plans.
  • 74% of HMO consumers ranked the performance of their doctors and nurses excellent or very good, with 81% of PPO consumers giving their doctors the highest ratings.