Minnesota Hospitals, Clinics Busy With Free End-Of-Year Care
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Minnesota hospitals and clinics are seeing a surge of patients with high-deductible health plans looking to squeeze in surgeries and other care before the end of the year.
Insurance will cover the patients, who've met their out-of-pocket maximums. But their high deductibles, which are meant to bring down monthly premiums, will reset Jan. 1.
Doug Campbell of Bloomington says there is an incentive not to seek care during the deductible period because it's expensive, but it's reversed when the deductible is satisfied.
Abbott Northwestern Hospital president Ben Bache-Wiig says November and December are 20 percent busier than the average month because of cost-sharing provisions.
Health insurer Medica says it pays out 16 percent more for care in December than during the average month.