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Wall Street Comes to Washington: Market Watchers and Policy Analysts Evaluate the Health Care Market

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Publication Date: July 2002

Publisher(s): Center for Studying Health System Change

Series: Issue Brief No. 54

Topic: Health (Health care financing)

Type: Brief

Abstract:

Consumers will pay more for health care as employers respond to a third year of double-digit insurance premium increases in 2003. Firms will shift more costs to workers through higher deductibles and copayments to protect their bottom lines and increase worker awareness of the cost of care, according to a panel of market and health policy experts at the Center for Studying Health System Change's (HSC) seventh annual Wall Street roundtable. But don't look for large employers to make radical changes to workers' health benefits. So far, most employers are cautiously eyeing new insurance products, including consumer-driven health plans and tiered hospital and physician networks. As costs continue spiraling upward, a hospital building boom is underway, raising concerns about a new medical arms race and increased costs.