Risks 2013, 1(1), 34-42; doi:10.3390/risks1010034
Article

Understanding the “Black Box” of Employer Decisions about Health Insurance Benefits: The Case of Depression Products

1 Department of Mental Health Law and Policy, College of Behavioral and Community Sciences, 13301 Bruce B. Downs Blvd., University of South Florida, Tampa FL 33612, USA 2 Colorado Business Group on Health, 12640 West Cedar Drive, Lakewood, CO 80228, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 March 2013; in revised form: 20 May 2013 / Accepted: 21 May 2013 / Published: 29 May 2013
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Abstract: In a randomized trial of two interventions on employer health benefit decision-making, 156 employers in the evidence-based (EB) condition attended a two hour presentation reviewing scientific evidence demonstrating depression products that increase high quality treatment of depression in the workforce provide the employer a return on investment. One-hundred sixty-nine employers participating in the usual care (UC) condition attended a similar length presentation reviewing scientific evidence supporting healthcare effectiveness data and information set (HEDIS) monitoring. This study described the decision-making process in 264 (81.2%) employers completing 12 month follow-up. The EB intervention did not increase the proportion of employers who discussed depression products with others in the company (29.2% versus 32.1%, p > 0.10), but it did significantly influence the content of the discussions that occurred. Discussion in EB companies promoted the capacity of a depression product to realize a return on investment (18.4% versus 4.7%, p = 0.05) and to improve productivity (47.4% versus 25.6%, p = 0.06) more often than discussions in UC companies. Almost half of EB and UC employers reported that return on investment has a large impact on health benefit decision-making. These results demonstrate the difficulty of influencing employer decisions about health benefits using group presentations.
Keywords: health benefits; insurance; depression; employers; return on investment; productivity; absenteeism; collaborative care

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MDPI and ACS Style

Rost, K.; Papadopoulos, A.; Wang, S.; Marshall, D. Understanding the “Black Box” of Employer Decisions about Health Insurance Benefits: The Case of Depression Products. Risks 2013, 1, 34-42.

AMA Style

Rost K, Papadopoulos A, Wang S, Marshall D. Understanding the “Black Box” of Employer Decisions about Health Insurance Benefits: The Case of Depression Products. Risks. 2013; 1(1):34-42.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Rost, Kathryn; Papadopoulos, Airia; Wang, Su; Marshall, Donna. 2013. "Understanding the “Black Box” of Employer Decisions about Health Insurance Benefits: The Case of Depression Products." Risks 1, no. 1: 34-42.

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