Alegeus annualHealthcare Consumerism Index, which analyzes thehealthcare spending and savings decisions of a sample of employed US adults, found thatconsumers are exhibiting slightly savvier behaviors around shopping for healthcare services.
Yet consumers savings habits for future healthcare expensesarefailing to keep up with the times, considering the increased healthcare cost responsibilities resulting from higher deductibles andout-of-pocket costs.
The Alegeus report concludes most consumers lack someunderstanding or focus for managingtheir increased financial responsibilities.
The report aims to measure consumers empowerment totake greater ownership of their healthcare finances, and found a far higher measurement for consumerism in healthcare spending (54.44 points out of 100) compared to consumerism in healthcare saving (21.88 points out of 100).
When it came to spending, this years scoreindicated a slight improvement over last years of 48.3.
Despite that progress,consumersare still much more engaged and thoughtful about buying a TV (scoring a 78.9) than they are about making decisions concerning their own healthcare, Alegeus found.
It added that even with 76% of consumers reporting a focus on getting the best value for their healthcare, the majority of those still did notunderstand their cost responsibility for a given service until they were billed afterward.
Regarding healthcare saving,Disciplined saving for short- and long-term healthcare costs represents a paradigm shift for most consumers, and the research findings affirm that the majority of consumers are under-funding their healthcare savings, Alegeus wrote.
It found only34% claiming toknow how much they will need to save to pay for their healthcare this year, and only 23% saying they were saving aggressively for future healthcare expenses.Recommended Reading
Alegeus: 2016 Alegeus Healthcare Consumerism Index Reveals Modest Increase in Cost and Value-Conscious Spending Behaviors