HMOS: Will Likely ‘Evolve’ To Stay In Existence
HMOs are "under such strain that many in the industry are predicting they will no longer keep their present form," the Los Angeles Times reports. Most plans "have backed away from operating their own clinics," and some "have recently modified their HMO plans to offer wider choice." CIGNA CEO Bud Volberding said the "HMO of 10 years ago is pretty much gone," and will be replaced with something that offers "more of a range of products," such as plans modeled after less-restrictive PPOs. Morgan Stanley Dean Witter analyst Todd Richter predicted a "fundamental change" that will produce a system modeled "more like old-fashioned indemnity insurance than an HMO." HMOs of the future will charge higher premiums, deductibles and copays in return for providing consumers with greater choice and protection, according to the Times (Bernstein, 12/5).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.