I should start selling myself as a psychic, 'cause here's another thing I predicted.
Health Savings Plans Start to Falter
Despite Employer Enthusiasm for Consumer-Directed Approach,
Patients Express Dissatisfaction With How the Accounts Work
By VANESSA FUHRMANS
President Bush and many big employers have hailed "consumer-directed" health plans and savings accounts as an effective weapon in the battle against runaway medical costs. But several years after the plans got off to a fast start, the approach appears to be stumbling -- largely because of consumers' unease in using them.
But low enrollment and low satisfaction among workers who are offered them raise the question of whether consumer-directed plans will stall before they ever hit the mainstream. Few employers are focusing on the costly measures -- such as offering better coverage or more consumer education -- that may be needed to accelerate these plans.