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Life Health > Health Insurance

Patients rank health information trades

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For consumers, information about their blood pressure and their blood cholesterol levels is a kind of currency.

Consultants at West Monroe Partners LLC recently found that consumers are much more willing to trade that currency for lower premiums and better customer service than for easier access to doctors.

Twenty-six percent of 1,300 U.S. patients surveyed said they would be willing to trade health information for better service, and 38 percent said they would trade health information for better rates.

Just 15 percent said they would trade information for easier access to doctors.

Related: Health quality researchers: We could learn from Yelp

Consultants for West Monroe Partners talk about the relative value of access to doctors, health plan services and coverage prices in a new survey report.

The Chicago-based firm tries to help clients align their incentives with their goals. For health insurers, the firm’s consultants say, one important goal is getting enough personal health information to improve enrollees’ care.

Insurers need good incentives to get personal health information, because only 48 percent of consumers trust their health care providers to keep their personal health information safe, the consultants say. 

Today, however, only 8 percent of insurers offer rate discounts to enrollees who provide health information, the consultants say.


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