HMO members happier than those in POS plans

Point-of-service plans have been outrunning traditional HMOs in growth rates (48 percent vs. 14 percent in 1995, though they still have only 12 percent of the membership that pure HMOs have) but–funny thing–patients who are in POS plans are a little less likely to intend to reenroll than are their HMO counterparts. In 1995, 75 percent of pure HMO and 71 percent of POS members said they were likely to reenroll; last year, each class dropped one point. Note, however, that while 11 percent of POS members said they definitely or probably would not reenroll, only 8 percent of pure HMO members were that negative.

What’s also curious is that intention to reenroll is higher among HMO and POS members than their overall satisfaction with the quality of medical care. Maybe they like the premium level, or a particular provider, or for some reason don’t have a good alternative. But only 62 percent of HMO members and 55 percent of POS members were very or extremely satisfied last year.

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