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Let them have choice : gains from shifting away from employer-sponsored health insurance and toward an individual exchange

Author: Leemore Dafny; Katherine Ho; Mauricio Varela; National Bureau of Economic Research.
Publisher: Cambridge, MA : National Bureau of Economic Research, ©2010.
Series: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research : Online), working paper no. 15687.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"The NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health provides summaries of publications like this. You can sign up to receive the NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health by email. Most non-elderly Americans purchase insurance through their employers, which sponsor a limited number of plans. We estimate how much employees would be willing to pay for the right to apply their employer subsidy to the plan of their choosing. We make use of  Read more...
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Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Leemore Dafny; Katherine Ho; Mauricio Varela; National Bureau of Economic Research.
OCLC Number: 503041401
Notes: Title from PDF file as viewed on 3/2/2010.
Description: 1 online resource (46 pages) : illustrations.
Series Title: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research : Online), working paper no. 15687.
Responsibility: Leemore Dafny, Katherine Ho, Mauricio Varela.

Abstract:

"The NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health provides summaries of publications like this. You can sign up to receive the NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health by email. Most non-elderly Americans purchase insurance through their employers, which sponsor a limited number of plans. We estimate how much employees would be willing to pay for the right to apply their employer subsidy to the plan of their choosing. We make use of a proprietary dataset containing information on plan offerings and enrollment for 800+ large employers between 1998 and 2006; the dataset represents over 10 million Americans annually. We estimate a model of employee preferences using the set of plans they are offered. Using the estimated parameters from this model, we predict employees' choices in a hypothetical world in which additional plans in a market are available to them on the same terms, i.e. tax-free and subsidized by their employers. Holding employer outlays constant, we estimate that the median welfare gain from expanding choice amounts to roughly 20 percent of premiums. For the vast majority of employee groups and alternative model specifications, the gains from choice are likely to outweigh potential premium increases associated with a transition from large group to individual pricing"--National Bureau of Economic Research web site.

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