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Interactive Discussion on Consumer Survey Research Reveals 55% of Consumers Want More from Their Health Plans

Health plans want to know – what can I do to improve member satisfaction? A recent AHIP webinar, co-hosted by HealthEdge, featured the results of an independent, nationwide study of more than 2,800 consumers to find out what matters most to today’s healthcare consumers.

During the webinar, more than 100 AHIP members joined to hear HealthEdge experts discuss key findings from the research, which included:

  • Only 45% of healthcare consumers, on average, are fully satisfied with their current health plan, leaving much room for improvement. When a care manager is involved, member satisfaction increases by more than 10%.
  • The top three things consumers want when shopping for health insurance include: benefits and coverage that meet their specific needs, the ability to keep their doctors, and the lowest costs available. However, generational differences are worthy of further review.
  • The top ways health plans can improve member satisfaction include more personalized engagement, better customer service, and more self-service tools that empower consumers to play a more active role in their healthcare journey.
  • 4 out of 5 consumers say that when health plans or care managers adhere to their communication preferences, it positively impacts overall member satisfaction, demonstrating the need for payers to adopt omni-channel communication capabilities.

But why is member satisfaction so important these days? On the webinar, HealthEdge executive Christine Davis described these times as the “perfect storm” for member satisfaction:

  • In our post-COVID world, healthcare consumers’ expectations have been shaped by their retail experiences, where interactions are often online, highly targeted, and personalized. Online reviews also play a larger role in the shopping experience these days.
  • Healthcare IT has historically lagged behind other industries, so as new market disruptors like CVS, Walmart, and Amazon enter the healthcare space, their tech-savvy platforms and loyal consumer following will require health plans to embrace modern technology to keep pace.
  • Competition within the traditional health plan space has also heated up, with the average Medicare Advantage beneficiary having 39 different plans from which they can choose1. Of the 16 million participants now on the ACA Exchange Marketplace, the average individual has three or more plan options from which they can choose2. And competition across all lines of business is expected to continue to increase.
  • Regulations continue to push toward member satisfaction and appear to support a sense of empowerment for consumers. For example, for the 2023 rating year, CMS is doubling the weight of member satisfaction in its Star rating system3. Interoperability mandates also play a role in health plans’ ability to adopt modern technology systems that can support transparency and data sharing across care settings and with members.
  • With the growing trend of high deductible health plans, more consumers are aware of the rising healthcare costs and are demanding greater transparency. These demands are supported by new legislation such as the No Surprises Act.


The webinar focused on highlighting the key findings, and the full research report is filled with useful insights, including generational differences, that can help health plan leaders better understand what matters most to today’s healthcare consumers and how to plan for future generations.

In addition, the report analyzes the market’s perception of health plans, with 70% of respondents saying that they trust their health plans the most to administer their benefits. However, an alarming 40% of respondents blame health insurance companies for the high cost of healthcare today.

Download the full research report to learn what more than 2,800 healthcare consumers had to say, and if you missed the webinar, watch the full recording here.