Cost and reimbursement pressures, the explosion of boomers in the hospital patient mix, and the movement toward population health are spurring health systems to launch their own health insurance plans.
Health systems are increasingly taking on new roles and becoming health insurers. Spurred by healthcare reform, the creation of health insurance exchanges, and a shift to population health, health systems are assessing the opportunities of becoming a payer against the risk of taking that step in the ever evolving healthcare industry.
A growing number of health systems are deciding that it is worth the risk. In a June survey of more than 100 hospitals and health system across the country, 34% responded that they already own health plans. Another 21% said they plan to launch a health insurance plan by 2018, according to the Advisory Board Co., a Washington, D.C.-based research and consulting firm.
Among the health systems launching health plans: