What Benefits Companies Offer Consumer Driven Health Care?

Consumer Driven Health Care (CDHC) has been largely pioneered by a handful of specialized new companies, but several of the big health companies are now creating their own CDHC plans or contracting with the specialized new companies. Benefits companies offering CDHC plans are creating online markets where consumers: manage their health care expenses; get information on provider quality; and pool their clout to get information (and discounts) on provider prices. These benefits companies generally do administrative services (such as coordinating employee choice and tracking expenses) instead of assuming risk (receiving a fixed premium like an insurance company). Generally, the high-deductible insurance policy is offered by another company. The following are some of the health benefits companies that are most active in offering Consumer Driven Health Care plans:
Definity Health — founded in 1998 and based in Minneapolis, Minnesota — offers a CDHC product that includes a health account, high-deductible health insurance, and online support services. The account is most similar to an HRA for large employers. The online support includes information on provider quality and prices, health expense tracking, and care management. Definity Health has enrolled approximately two hundred thousand people through over fifty organizations, including over a dozen Fortune 500 companies. Definity Health has received awards from the National Business Group on Health, the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans, and the Health Insurance Association of America.

Lumenos — founded in 1999 and based on Alexandria, Virginia — offers a CDHC product that includes a health account, high-deductible health insurance, and online support services. The account is most similar to an HRA for large employers. The support provides information on provider quality, health management, expense tracking, and provider help by phone. Certain preventative care services are paid separately. Lumenos has enrolled over 70,000 people through a growing number of companies including those in the Fortune 500. Lumenos recently received awards at the Consumer Directed Health Care Conference in Las Vegas. They also recently received an additional $10 million dollars in venture capital funding.

Destiny Health — part of the international company Discovery Health (with over a million enrollees) — offers a CDHC product that includes an account, high-deductible insurance, and online support services. The account is most similar to an HRA for large employers. Destiny Health has enrolled over 20,000 people through over 700 employers. Destiny Health was recently called a leader in the field of CDHC by Forrester Research.

HealthMarket — founded in 1999 and based in Connecticut — offers several CDHC products including an account, high-deductible health insurance, and online support services. HealthMarket has enrolled over 35,000 people through over 2,000 employers. HealthMarket has received awards from Anderson Consulting, the Center for Business Innovation, and the Consumer Directed Health Care Conference.

Vivius — founded in 2000 and based in Minneapolis, Minnesota — offers an account that is more similar to a Customized Sub-Capitation Account (CSSA) than a Health Reimbursement Arrangement (HRA). Individual employees each create their own customized provider network. Vivius began enrollment in Spokane, Washington. Its platform is planned for use in over a dozen markets during the next three years.

MyHealthBank — founded in 1999 and based in Portland, Oregon — offers multiple CDHC plans — including accounts, high-deductible insurance, and online support services.

HealthAllies — offers “Consumer Choice Networks” that provide discounted prices and customized benefit plans. HealthAllies’ website enables employees to research health care topics and compare discounted prices. They received an award from the Adaptive Business Leaders Organization.