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U.S. employees switch from HMOs to PPOs

Physician Practice Advisor, November 22, 2006

U.S. employees are abandoning health maintenance organizations (HMOs) in record numbers, often switching to less restrictive preferred provider organizations (PPOs), according to an article in the Chicago Tribune.

Roughly one in five insured American workers is currently covered by an HMO, compared with about one in three only 10 years ago. In that same time period, the proportion of workers enrolled in PPOs has more than doubled, from 28% in 1996 to 60% today.

The shift away from HMOs began as they became more expensive for big employers, in part because HMOs ended use of capitation reimbursements to phsyicians and often attracted sicker patients who needed more care, according to the article.

Click here to read the Chicago Tribune report.