NU Online News Service, June 22, 2004, 3:43 p.m. EDT
Aetna Inc., Hartford, says its account-based health plans seem to be succeeding at holding down medical claims costs.[@@]
Aetna began enrolling large numbers of employees in its HealthFund defined contribution program plans in 2003. The plans combine high-deductible health coverage with personal health accounts.
Aetna compared claims for about 14,500 workers who belonged to the HealthFund plans throughout 2003 with claims for the same workers for 2002, when the workers were in conventional health plans.
Medical costs increased an average of only 3.7% between 2002 and 2003 for the workers in the HealthFund plans, while medical costs increased more than 10% for the workers in the conventional plans, Aetna says.