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Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine:
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e318279d74c
Original Articles

Choosing Among Employer-sponsored Health Plans: What Drives Employee Choices?

Schwartz, Janet PhD; Hadler, Nortin M. MD; Ariely, Dan PhD; Huber, Joel C. PhD; Emerick, Thomas MBA

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Objective: To probe employee basis for choosing health plans.

Methods: In a Web study, 337 employees from large private and public employers were asked to choose among health plans varying on several common dimensions.

Results: On per-dollar basis, respondents were more willing to spend $3 to $4 on out-of-pocket copayments than $1 on premiums. Nevertheless, sensitivity to monthly premium is greatest among those who are younger and cover only themselves, whereas sensitivity to the annual deductible is greatest among nonwhite families.

Conclusion: Employees are facing a complicated choice and might be well-served by more information about the value of options under different likelihood scenarios.

©2013The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine


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