Reviving Managed Care with Health Savings Accounts

Although health savings accounts (HSAs) and managed care are often seen as antithetical, they can be integrated in fruitful ways. Moreover, combining these approaches would serve policy objectives by clarifying the payment responsibilities of patients, health plans, and premium payers, thus altering important perceptions about health care decision-making. The availability in HSAs of funds that patients can use to pay for services not covered under insurance contracts should help to relegitimize the predetermination of benefits and enable the public and the legal system to take a more benign view of corporate health plans as agents of their subscribers.