'Managed care has become the norm'
According to an annual survey of more than 2,800 U.S. employers of various sizes, enrollment in all kinds of managed care has passed the two-thirds mark. Some 63 percent of the companies' covered workers were in HMOs, preferred-provider organizations and point-of-service plans in 1994; last year that share rose to 71 percent. Pacing the growth were companies employing from 10 to 499 workers, enticed in part by an average 11.9-percent reduction in one year in small-company HMO costs per covered active employee. The survey also found that total spending on health benefits was up only 2.1 percent for 1995 — that after an outright decline of 1.1 percent in 1994. Concludes benefits consulting firm Foster Higgins, which conducts the survey: "Managed care has become the norm."
SOURCE: FOSTER HIGGINS, NEW YORK