Markets at Risk— Current and Future Challenges in a Managed Care Marketplace. Implications for Future Market Trends and Areas for Tracking and Monitoring

12/01/2000

The paper concludes by assessing how these trends may impact several areas of interest and what issues and indicators policymakers may wish to track and monitor as these trends unfold. The areas examined include:

  • Cost containment
  • Outcome improvement
  • Consumer acceptance
  • Provider cooperation
  • Public sector purchasing

In general terms, the implications are not particularly promising in any of these areas. But they are especially daunting in terms of cost control and provider cooperation. Provider market consolidation could further forestall efforts of plans to negotiate rates and terms that could result in savings similar to those observed in the early and mid-1990s. Gains made on outcomes reporting and, possibly improving consumer acceptance, may not be sufficient to overcome the fact that if managed care plans cannot control costs, many purchasers—both private and public—will not see them as adding value in the health care marketplace.