EBRI Notes

"Satisfaction With Health Coverage and Care: Findings from the 2011 EBRI/MGA Consumer Engagement in Health Care Survey" and "Is Working to Age 70 Really the Answer for Retirement Income Adequacy?"

Aug 30, 2012 24  pages


Health Plan Satisfaction:

  • Satisfaction levels have been trending up among CDHP enrollees, and trending down among traditional-plan enrollees. Satisfaction levels with getting doctor appointments were high relative to other aspects of health care, regardless of plan type.
  • Individuals in consumer-driven health plans (CDHPs) and high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) were less likely than those in traditional plans both to recommend their health plan or to stay with their current plan, if they had the opportunity to switch.
  • Dissatisfaction with out-of-pocket costs may be driving overall satisfaction trends.

Working to Age 70?

  • It would be comforting from a public policy standpoint to assume that merely working to age 70 would be a panacea to the significant challenges of assuring retirement income adequacy, but this may be a particularly risky strategy, especially for the vulnerable group of low-income workers.
  • Prior research demonstrates the significant error introduced into retirement readiness calculations if nursing-home costs are excluded, and highlighted the need for a re-examination of the methodologies behind studies that only extrapolate a relatively static picture of retirement savings
  • A worker’s participation status in a defined contribution (DC) plan at age 65 will be extremely important due to the multi-year consequences for additional employee and employer contributions to the plan.
  • While workers need to make their own decisions on the correct trade-offs of saving today vs. deferring retirement, they should be able to expect that those presenting alternatives be as accurate and complete as possible, avoiding simplistic “rules of thumb” that may result in future retirees, through no fault of their own, coming up short.