BLOOMFIELD, Conn., October 19, 2010 - When Americans engage in health-smart habits such as participating in health coaching and disease management programs, substituting generic medications for brand name drugs and avoiding unnecessary trips to the emergency room, their total medical costs went down 15 percent -- an average $358 per person in the first year -- according to a new multi-year study comparing the health care claims experience of 897,000 Cigna customers in consumer driven health (CDH) plans, PPOs and HMOs.
The 2010 Fifth Annual Cigna Choice Fund Experience Study findings show individuals covered by Cigna Choice Fund CDH plans improve their costs without compromising care by becoming more engaged in improving their health and by becoming informed health care consumers:
One company that is realizing the benefits of Cigna Choice Fund plans is Starwood Hotels & Resorts. According to Starwood Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer Jeff Cava:
"Starwood is demonstrating that by giving our associates affordable health plan choices supported with education and health advocacy resources to help them make better health care decisions, people will make good decisions about their health and wealth. Early on it has become clear that more Starwood associates are using their preventive benefits, increasingly choosing generic medications over costlier brand names and taking advantage of free preventive prescriptions through Cigna Home Delivery Pharmacy. Moreover, our associates are literally "buying into" their plans -- with 83 percent contributing their own pre-tax dollars to their health savings accounts."
As with previous Cigna studies, the Fifth Annual Cigna Choice Fund Experience Study confirms that CDH plans reduce health care costs relative to other types of plans without compromising care or shifting costs to employees:
"Our studies have consistently shown individuals in Cigna Choice Fund plans reduce their annual health care costs without compromising care, and now the data are rolling in showing why," explains Cigna Chief Medical Officer Jeffery Kang, M.D. "The evidence is clear. Given the right incentives, the right health improvement programs, useful cost and quality information, and easy-to-understand correspondence, individuals are making rational, wise and successful health care decisions.
"Perhaps because most individuals covered by Cigna Choice Fund plans are receiving the same or better levels of care for lower cost, 83 percent of those surveyed report that they are "satisfied" or "very satisfied" with the service for their CDH plans - slightly higher than the 82 percent satisfaction rate across all of our health plans."
Cigna (NYSE:CI), a global health service company, is dedicated to helping people improve their health, well being and sense of security. Cigna Corporation's operating subsidiaries provide an integrated suite of medical, dental, behavioral health, pharmacy and vision care benefits, as well as group life, accident and disability insurance, through 60 million customer relationships with individuals in the U.S. and around the world. To learn more about Cigna, visit www.cigna.com. To sign up for email alerts or an RSS feed of company news, log on to http://www.cigna.com/newsroom/rss/. Also, follow us on Twitter at @cigna, visit Cigna's YouTube channel at http://www.youtube.com/cigna and listen to Cigna's podcast series with healthy tips and information at http://www.cigna.com/podcasts or by searching "Cigna" in iTunes.