Skip Navigation

Close and don't show again.

Your browser is out of date.

You may not get the full experience here on National Journal.

Please upgrade your browser to any of the following supported browsers:

People Like Expensive Health Care, Study Finds People Like Expensive Health Care, Study Finds

This ad will end in seconds
 
Close X

Not a member? Learn More »

Forget Your Password?

Don't have an account? Register »

Reveal Navigation
 

 

Health Care / HEALTH CARE

People Like Expensive Health Care, Study Finds

photo of Maggie Fox
March 5, 2012

Here's an unusual factor that could be helping to drive up U.S. health care costs: If people get a choice, they'll often go for the priciest option, researchers reported on Monday.

Patients tend to equate cost with quality, Judith Hibbard of the University of Oregon and colleagues report in the journal Health Affairs -- something that retailers know all too well but that may not have been taken into account in health care reform efforts.

The finding may argue against health care reform proposals, especially ideas about insurance-premium support put forward by Republicans such as House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., that assume consumers will make canny choices if they are shopping with vouchers or their own money.

 

Hibbard's team studied 1,400 workers, offering them different doctors and care options. If they were given details on price alone, the volunteers chose the most expensive choice. But if given details about the quality of care, they moderated their choices, Hibbard's team said.

"It’s not simply a question of providing information on cost, but providing it in a way that is integrated with quality scores," said Dr. Carolyn Clancy, director of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, which paid for the study.

A report last week from the International Federation of Health Plans found that Americans pay more for surgery, doctors, drugs, and diagnostic imaging than people living in Spain, France, Germany, Argentina, Chile, Canada, India, and Switzerland.

LIKE THIS STORY? Sign up for Health Care Edge

Get your daily dose of National Journal's health care coverage.

Sign up form for Health Care Edge
Job Board
Search Jobs
Digital and Content Manager, E4C
American Society of Civil Engineers | New York, NY
PRODUCT REVIEW ENGINEER
American Society of Civil Engineers | CA
Neighborhood Traffic Safety Services Intern
American Society of Civil Engineers | Bellevue, WA
United Technologies Research Fellow
American Society of Civil Engineers | New York, NY
Process Engineering Co-op
American Society of Civil Engineers | Conshohocken, PA
Electrical Engineer Co-op
American Society of Civil Engineers | Findlay, OH
Application Engineer/Developer INTERN - Complex Fluids
American Society of Civil Engineers | Brisbane, CA
Application Engineer - Internships CAE/CFD Metro Detroit
American Society of Civil Engineers | Livonia, MI
Chief Geoscientist
American Society of Civil Engineers
Application Engineer - Internships CAE/CFD Metro Boston
American Society of Civil Engineers | Burlington, MA
Professional Development Program Engineer
American Society of Civil Engineers | Farmington Hills, MI
Civil Enginering Intern - Water/Wastewater/Site-Development
American Society of Civil Engineers | Sacramento, CA
Staff Accountant
American Society of Civil Engineers | Englewood, CO
Biomedical Service Internship Position
American Society of Civil Engineers | Flint, MI
 
Comments
comments powered by Disqus