Categories:  'Health Care - The Effects of Lacking Coverage'  

When a Co-Pay Gets in the Way of Health

When it comes to real life, health care and economics don’t always seem to follow the same logic. In order to balance minimize consumer pay [...]

When it comes to real life, health care and economics don’t always seem to follow the same logic. In order to balance minimize consumer pay and avoid bankrupting insurers, one solution may be to charge co-payments. The cost-benefit logic is that if patients face costs, they will think more carefully about benefits. While sound in theory, studies found that co-payments actually make behavioral hazards worse. On the other hand, when highly-effective drugs were free to people, they were more likely to take them and saw reduced risk of future health problems. In fact, some insurers spent less than if they had not waived the co-payment costs.

Furthermore, if Medicaid expanded, then marketplace premiums lowered for all beneficiaries. If states don’t want to expand to include lower-income people, who are more likely to be in poorer health, prices would increase for everybody. And the more people are forced to spend out of pocket, the less likely they are to spend money on it.

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Articles

Publication Date: 05/02/2015
Source: The New York Times
Author: Margot Sanger-Katz
Publication Date: 29/01/2015
Source: The New England Journal of Medicine
Author: Douglas B. Jacobs, Sc. B., and Benjamin D. Sommers, M.D., Ph.D.
Publication Date: 25/08/2016
Source: The New York Times
Author: Margot Sanger-Katz
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Source: The New York Times
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Publication Date: 8/10/13
Source: New York Times
Author: SENDHIL MULLAINATHAN