More Americans are willing to limit their choice of healthcare providers to save on out-of-pocket costs, according to a study by the Center for Studying Health System Change, Washington.
The percentage of Americans with employer-sponsored health insurance who were at least somewhat willing to trade a broad choice of doctors and hospitals for lower copayments, deductibles and coinsurance rates increased to 59% in 2003 from 55% in 2001 after remaining stable since 1997, the study found. But substantial minorities remained deeply divided on the issue, with 20% of Americans "strongly willing" to limit provider choice and 21% "strong unwilling."
Health insurance premiums -- and employee cost-sharing -- have risen substantially since the mid-1990s, when health plans broadened their provider networks to meet consumer demand for greater choice.
The study was based on the surveys of 28,000 and 20,500 working-age adults conducted in 2001 and 2003, respectively. View the complete study.