Preventive Medicine- IBM Drops Co-Pays for Primary Care Visits
(11/11/09)- IBM Corp. recently announced that it would stop requiring $20 co-payments by employees when they visit a primary-care physician. The company said that in doing so, it would encourage people to go to a primary-care physician sooner, and thereby get earlier diagnosis which in the long run would end up in savings to all parties involved in the medical process.
The company said that the action would apply to about 80% of its workers who are enrolled in plans in which the company self-insures. The new policy does not cover employees who are enrolled in HMO plans.
IBM has about 115,000 employees and spends about $1.3 billion a year on U.S. health care costs for its employees.
Randy MacDonald, a senior vice president for human resources, said the change "is designed to encourage people to get fixed early. .. We'd rather diagnose a situation and deal with it quickly as opposed to it becoming chronic."
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posted November 11, 2009
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