Are high-deductible plans the best choice?

For many individuals with employer-provided health insurance, a recent paper by Liu and Sydnor (2022) find that this is indeed the case. The authors use data from the 2011-2016 Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) Employer Health Benefits Survey (EHBS). The authors examine the maximum out-of-pocket cost (including both premiums and maximum cost-sharing) as well as whether…

What is an HRA-IIHIC?

President Trump wants to allow more people be able to purchase lower cost health plans. Most of the media has focused on plans to make it easier to purchase short-term plans and association health plans. However, a recent final rule is also making it easier to use pre-tax dollars to fund premiums for individual health…

Trump Executive Order to Mandate Price Transparency for Providers

As the N.Y. Times reports, more transparency is coming to provider prices. The White House released an executive order Monday afternoon intended to require insurance companies, doctors and hospitals to give patients more information about precisely what their care will cost before they get it. More transparency is generally good and surprise billing for out-of-network costs has been a major…

Do HDHPs save money?

This is the question that Zhang et al. (2017) attempt to answer using data form people who switched to a high-deductible health plan (HDHP) compared to those who stayed in the same plan.  They found: After enrollment in HDHPs, 28 percent of enrollees changed physicians for office visits (compared to 19 percent in the Traditional…

Health Insurance for Part Time Workers

The goal of LyfeBank is basically to serve as a 401(k) for health insurance.  Employers can make contributions to the employees health insurance into a fund and workers can use this money to buy various health insurance products, reimburse themselves for co-payments or deductibles, or pay for medical costs directly. LyfeBank has two key innovations.  The…