Connecticuts Value-Based Insurance Plan Increased The Use Of Targeted Services And Medication Adherence
Author: Richard A. Hirth, Elizabeth Q. Cliff, Teresa B. Gibson, M. Richard McKellar, A. Mark Fendrick
In 2011 Connecticut implemented the Health Enhancement Program for state employees. This voluntary program followed the principles of value-based insurance design (VBID) by lowering patient costs for certain high-value primary and chronic disease preventive services, coupled with requirements that enrollees receive these services. Nonparticipants in the program, including those removed for noncompliance with its requirements, were assessed a premium surcharge. The program was intended to curb cost growth and improve health through adherence to evidence-based preventive care. To evaluate its efficacy in doing so, we compared changes in service use and spending after implementation of the program to trends among employees of six other states. Compared to employees of other states, Connecticut employees were similar in age and sex but had a slightly higher percentage of enrollees with chronic conditions and substantially higher spending at baseline. During the program’s first two years, the use of targeted services and adherence to medications for chronic conditions increased, while emergency department use decreased, relative to the situation in the comparison states. The program’s impact on costs was inconclusive and requires a longer follow-up period. This novel combination of VBID principles and participation requirements may be a tool that can help plan sponsors increase the use of evidence-based preventive services.