Preferred Provider Organization (prefer + provider_organization)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Employment and quality of life in liver transplant recipients

Sammy Saab
The purposes of liver transplantation (LT) include the extension of survival, improvement in quality of life, and the return of the recipient as a contributing member of society. Employment is one measure of the ability to return to society. The aim of this study is to determine the factors affecting employment/subemployment after LT. A total of 308 adult liver transplant recipients who were seen at the University of California, Los Angeles were administered the Medical Outcomes Short Form 36 (SF-36) and a questionnaire regarding work history and insurance coverage. Multivariate analysis were used to identify independent variables associated with posttransplantation employment. Interaction terms were used to examine effect modification. Of 308 transplant recipients, 218 (70.8%) worked prior to transplantation, and 78 (27%) worked posttransplantation. Pretransplant variables that were independently associated with posttransplantation employment included the following: lack of disability income (odds ratio [OR] = 1.86; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.32-7.18; P = 0.36); health maintenance organization (HMO)/preferred provider organization (PPO) insurance (OR = 3.08; 95% CI, 1.32-7.18; P < 0.01); the number of hours worked (OR = 1.17; 95% CI, 1.08-1.28; P < 0.01); and the lack of diabetes mellitus (OR = 0.23; 95% CI, 0.70-0.73; P < 0.01). An interaction term between disability income and hours worked prior to transplantation (OR = 0.16; 95 % CI, 0.03-0.83; P = 0.03) was independently associated with posttransplantation employment. In a separate regression model of SF-36 responses, posttransplantation physical functioning (OR = 1.17; 95% CI, 1.10-1.26; P < 0.01) and role-physical (OR = 1.1; 95% CI, 1.02-1.16; P < 0.01) were independently associated with employment after transplantation. In conclusion, HMO or PPO insurance, lack of disability income coverage prior to transplant, the absence of diabetes mellitus, the number of hours worked prior to transplantation, and high physical functioning were associated with posttransplantation employment. Liver Transpl 13:1330,1338, 2007. © 2007 AASLD. [source]

Managed health care plans in Southern United States municipalities: empirical evidence on choice of plan

Christopher G. Reddick
Abstract This study examines factors that influence choice of Southern municipal government health care plans in the United States. Using survey data, this article specifically examines the managed care offerings of Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO), Preferred Provider Organizations (PPO) and Point of Service (POS) plans. Some of the more interesting empirical results indicate that HMO plans are associated more with employee satisfaction; PPO plans are associated with cost containment; and POS plans are more likely to provide health care benefits to part-time employees. Empirical evidence also indicates that employee satisfaction is increased when there is a greater choice of managed care plans available to municipal governments. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Association between Insurance Status and Admission Rate for Patients Evaluated in the Emergency Department

Jennifer Prah Ruger PhD
Abstract Objectives: To determine if differences exist in hospital and intensive care unit (ICU)/operating room admission rates based on health insurance status. Methods: This was a retrospective, cross-sectional study of data from hospital clinical and financial records for all 2001 emergency department (ED) visits (80,209) to an academic urban hospital. Hospital admission and intensive care unit (ICU)/operating room admissions were analyzed, controlling for triage acuity, primary complaint, diagnosis, diagnosis-related group (DRG) severity, and demographics. Multivariate logistic regression models identified factors associated with hospital admission for underinsured (self-pay and Medicaid) compared with other insured (private health maintenance organization, preferred provider organization, worker's compensation, and Medicare) patients. Results: Compared with the other insured group, underinsured patients were less likely, overall, to be admitted to the hospital (odds ratio [OR], 0.82; 95% CI = 0.76 to 0.90), controlling for all other factors studied. Subgroup analysis of common complaints showed underinsured patients with a chief complaint of abdominal pain (OR, 0.67; 95% CI = 0.55 to 0.80) or headache (OR, 0.61; 95% CI = 0.39 to 0.95) had the lowest adjusted ORs for admission to the hospital, compared with other insured patients. Underinsured patients with DRG of "menstrual and other female reproductive system disorders" (OR, 0.17; 95% CI = 0.06 to 0.51) or "esophagitis, gastroenteritis, and miscellaneous digestive disorders" (OR, 0.55; 95% CI = 0.28 to 0.96) also were less likely to be admitted compared with the other insured group. No significant differences in ICU/operating room admission rates were found between insurance groups. Conclusions: Whereas there was no difference in admission rates to the ICU/operating room by insurance status, this single-center study does suggest an association between insurance status and admission to a general hospital service, which may or may not be causally related. Factors other than provider bias may be responsible for this observed difference. [source]

Risk Segmentation Related to the Offering of a Consumer-Directed Health Plan: A Case Study of Humana Inc.

Laura A. Tollen
Objective. To determine whether the offering of a consumer-directed health plan (CDHP) is likely to cause risk segmentation in an employer group. Study Setting and Data Source. The study population comprises the approximately 10,000 people (employees and dependents) enrolled as members of the employee health benefit program of Humana Inc. at its headquarters in Louisville, Kentucky, during the benefit years starting July 1, 2000, and July 1, 2001. This analysis is based on primary collection of claims, enrollment, and employment data for those employees and dependents. Study Design. This is a case study of the experience of a single employer in offering two consumer-directed health plan options ("Coverage First 1" and "Coverage First 2") to its employees. We assessed the risk profile of those choosing the Coverage First plans and those remaining in more traditional health maintenance organization (HMO) and preferred provider organization (PPO) coverage. Risk was measured using prior claims (in dollars per member per month), prior utilization (admissions/1,000; average length of stay; prescriptions/1,000; physician office visit services/1,000), a pharmacy-based risk assessment tool (developed by Ingenix), and demographics. Data Collection/Extraction Methods. Complete claims and administrative data were provided by Humana Inc. for the two-year study period. Unique identifiers enabled us to track subscribers' individual enrollment and utilization over this period. Principal Findings. Based on demographic data alone, there did not appear to be a difference in the risk profiles of those choosing versus not choosing Coverage First. However, based on prior claims and prior use data, it appeared that those who chose Coverage First were healthier than those electing to remain in more traditional coverage. For each of five services, prior-year usage by people who subsequently enrolled in Coverage First 1 (CF1) was below 60 percent of the average for the whole group. Hospital and maternity admissions per thousand were less than 30 percent of the overall average; length of stay per hospital admission, physician office services per thousand, and prescriptions per thousand were all between 50 and 60 percent of the overall average. Coverage First 2 (CF2) subscribers' prior use of services was somewhat higher than CF1 subscribers', but it was still below average in every category. As with prior use, prior claims data indicated that Coverage First subscribers were healthier than average, with prior total claims less than 50 percent of average. Conclusions. In this case, the offering of high-deductible or consumer-directed health plan options alongside more traditional options caused risk segmentation within an employer group. The extent to which these findings are applicable to other cases will depend on many factors, including the employer premium contribution policies and employees' perception of the value of the various plan options. Further research is needed to determine whether risk segmentation will worsen in future years for this employer and if so, whether it will cause premiums for more traditional health plans to increase. [source]

Evaluation of the Effect of a Consumer-Driven Health Plan on Medical Care Expenditures and Utilization

Stephen T. Parente§
Objective. To compare medical care costs and utilization in a consumer-driven health plan (CDHP) to other health insurance plans. Study Design. We examine claims and employee demographic data from one large employer that adopted a CDHP in 2001. A quasi-experimental pre,post design is used to assign employees to three cohorts: (1) enrolled in a health maintenance organization (HMO) from 2000 to 2002, (2) enrolled in a preferred provider organization (PPO) from 2000 to 2002, or (3) enrolled in a CDHP in 2001 and 2002, after previously enrolling in either an HMO or PPO in 2000. Using this approach we estimate a difference-in-difference regression model for expenditure and utilization measures to identify the impact of CDHP. Principal Findings. By 2002, the CDHP cohort experienced lower total expenditures than the PPO cohort but higher expenditures than the HMO cohort. Physician visits and pharmaceutical use and costs were lower in the CDHP cohort compared to the other groups. Hospital costs and admission rates for CDHP enrollees, as well as total physician expenditures, were significantly higher than for enrollees in the HMO and PPO plans. Conclusions. An early evaluation of CDHP expenditures and utilization reveals that the new health plan is a viable alternative to existing health plan designs. Enrollees in the CDHP have lower total expenditures than PPO enrollees, but higher utilization of resource-intensive hospital admissions after an initially favorable selection. [source]

Assessing the Validity of Insurance Coverage Data in Hospital Discharge Records: California OSHPD Data

Thomas C. Buchmueller
Objective. To assess the accuracy of data on "expected source of payment" in the patient discharge database compiled by the California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD). Data Sources. The OSHPD discharge data for the years 1993 to 1996 linked with administrative data from the University of California (UC) health benefits program for the same years. The linked dataset contains records for all stays in California hospitals by UC employees, retirees, and spouses. Study Design. The accuracy of the OSHPD data is assessed using cross-tabulations of insurance type as coded in the two data sources. The UC administrative data is assumed to be accurate, implying that differences between the two sources represent measurement error in the OSHPD data. We cross-tabulate insurance categories and analyze the concordance of dichotomous measures of health maintenance organization (HMO) enrollment derived from the two sources. Principal Findings. There are significant coding errors in the OSHPD data on expected source of payment. A nontrivial percentage of patients with preferred provider organization (PPO) coverage are erroneously coded as being in HMOs, and vice versa. The prevalence of such errors increased after OSHPD introduced a new expected source of payment category for PPOs. Measurement problems are especially pronounced for older patients. Many patients over age 65 who are still covered by a commercial insurance plan are erroneously coded as having Medicare coverage. This, combined with the fact that during the period we analyzed, Medicare HMO enrollees and beneficiaries in the fee-for-service (FFS) program are combined in a single payment category, means that the OSHPD data provides essentially no information on insurance coverage for older patients. Conclusions. Researchers should exercise caution in using the expected source of payment in the OSHPD data. While measures of HMO coverage are reasonably accurate, it is not possible in these data to clearly identify PPOs as a distinct insurance category. For patients over age 65, it is not possible at all to distinguish among alternative insurance arrangements. [source]

Insurance and quality of life in men with prostate cancer: data from the Cancer of the Prostate Strategic Urological Research Endeavor

Natalia Sadetsky
OBJECTIVE To evaluate the effect of medical insurance coverage on health-related quality of life (HRQoL) outcomes in men newly diagnosed with prostate cancer, as insurance status has been shown to be related to clinical presentation, and types of treatments received for localized prostate cancer, but the relationship of insurance and QoL has not been explored sufficiently. PATIENTS AND METHODS Data from the Cancer of the Prostate Strategic Urological Research Endeavor (CaPSURE), a national longitudinal database registry of men with prostate cancer, were used for this study. Men who were newly diagnosed at entry to CaPSURE and completed one questionnaire before treatment, and one or more afterwards, were included. Insurance groups specific to age distribution of the study population were assessed, i.e. Medicare, preferred provider organizations (PPOs), health maintenance organizations (HMOs), fee for service (FFS), and the Veterans Administration (VA) for the younger group, and Medicare only, Medicare plus supplement (+S), and HMO/PPO for the older group. Associations between patients' clinical and sociodemographic characteristics and insurance status were evaluated by chi-square and analysis of variance. Relationships between insurance status and HRQoL outcomes over time were evaluated by multivariate mixed model. RESULTS Of 2258 men who met the study criteria, 1259 were younger and 999 were older than 65 years. More than half of the younger patients belonged to an HMO or PPO (42.2% and 32.5%, respectively), with the remainder distributed between Medicare, FFS and VA. In the older group most men belonged to Medicare only and the Medicare +S groups (22.4% and 58.8%, respectively). There was greater variation in clinical risk categories at presentation by insurance groups in the younger group. In the multivariate analysis, insurance status was significantly associated with changes in most HRQoL outcomes over time in the younger group, while in the older patients the effect of insurance diminished. Men in the VA and Medicare systems had lower scores at baseline and a steeper decline in Physical Function, Role Physical, Role Emotional, Social Function, Bodily Pain, Vitality, and General Health domains over time, controlling for type of initial treatment received, timing of HRQoL assessment, number of comorbidities, clinical risk at presentation, and income. CONCLUSION Insurance was independently related to changes in a wide range of HRQoL outcomes in men aged <65 years treated for prostate cancer. With the latest advances in early diagnosis and treatment of prostate cancer, clinicians and researchers should be aware of the specific groups of patients who are more vulnerable to the adverse effects of treatment and subsequent decline in functioning. The present findings could provide important tools for understanding the process of recovery after treatment for prostate cancer, and identifying needs for specific services. [source]