plans across the country are working to develop innovative products
and programs that help address rising health care costs. Through
pay for performance initiatives, consumer directed health plans
and transparency initiatives; Anthem is providing access to the
information needed to drive down health care costs.
people may believe that insurer profits are the driving force
behind increasing health insurance premiums, research reveals
very different reasons for the high cost of health insurance.
*Includes prevention, disease management, care coordination,
investments in health information technology and health support.
Based on a PricewaterhouseCoopers analysis, Factors Fueling
Healthcare Costs 2008
2008 America's Health Insurance Plans
A May 2009
report titled "What's Really Driving the Increase in Health Care
Premiums?" addresses the issue. The report, issued by the WellPoint
Institute of Health Care Knowledge, compiles research from sources
such as PricewaterhouseCoopers, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation,
the Kaiser Family Foundation, the Bureau of Labor Statistics
and the Congressional Budget Office.
to the report, the "key drivers" of spiraling U.S. health care
• Advances in medical technology and
subsequent increases in utilization;
• Price inflation for medical services
that exceeds inflation in other sectors of the economy;
• Cost-shifting from people who are
uninsured and those receiving Medicare and Medicaid to the private
• High cost of regulatory compliance;
• Patient lifestyles, such as smoking,
physical inactivity and obesity.
research from 2008, the report found that only three cents of
every health care premium dollar is spent on health insurer profit.
to the Institute's report, newer medical technologies tend to
increase costs because they are generally more expensive than
the older technologies they replace. While the availability of
more advanced, superior technologies can yield better results
for some patients, these technologies and diagnostic tests may
be used inappropriately in some situations where existing, older
technologies are more effective and accurate.
a copy of the full report, "What's Really Driving the Increase in Health Care Premiums?"