Fast Takes: News & Trend Lines, April 2013
Most physicians favor financial incentives for changing consumer health behavior
According to a new Deloitte survey, 71 percent of U.S. doctors believe that if incentives were widely introduced to motivate consumers to engage in healthy behaviors, such incentives as direct payments, reduced insurance premiums, and lower co-pays might work best. Less powerful motivators were rewards, perks, and points, named by 45 percent of physicians. Coaching (in person or online) or using patient navigators was identified by 28 percent of the doctors. Twenty-four percent of physicians noted the use of employers acting as influencers or change agents. The use of social networking and games to build a peer support community was named by 13 percent. However, 20 percent of physicians doubted that any of these incentives would make a difference in achieving a long-standing improvement in health status.
Fairly uniform in their response irrespective of age, gender, or medical specialty, 82 percent of physicians believe that unhealthy lifestyles have a major influence on the overall cost of health care. These findings come from a wider survey about health care reform and the future of the medical profession that was completed last year by 613 physicians.
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