Good news or bad news? You make the call.
A new report in Health Plan Week finds that although ER visits ticked up slightly, hospital admissions took a sharp dive during the fourth quarter of 2008, compared to the same period in '07. Analysts cited in the article blame higher financial burdens for patients (copays, deductibles) combined with the economic downturn for the decline.
While decreased utilization sounds like a benefit manager's dream come true, is it really? HPW sources also say the decline in hospital utilization could still prove costly, as people put off necessary services then end up needing more significant procedures later.
What say you? Is concern over declining utilization valid (as this EBN contributor contends), or just looking a gift horse in the mouth? Comment and let me know.
Register or login for access to this item and much more
All Employee Benefit News content is archived after seven days.
Community members receive:
- All recent and archived articles
- Conference offers and updates
- A full menu of enewsletter options
- Web seminars, white papers, ebooks
Already have an account? Log In
Don't have an account? Register for Free Unlimited Access