over-complexity and over-choice


The typical Medicare enrollee is able to choose from 57 Medicare prescription or Advantage plans. All you need to do is evaluate your options re: premiums, deductibles, co-pays, coinsurance, out-of-pocket maximums, etc.

Well . . .

“The amount of information that consumers need to grasp is dizzying, and it turns them off from doing a search,” Mr. Riccardi said. “They feel paralyzed about making a choice.”

“Drug plans have tiers with varying co-payments, coinsurance, and preferred options for brand-name drugs, generics and pharmacies. It’s pretty crazy when you review all the different plans. You can really get bleary-eyed.”

“We have this very fragmented system that assumes savvy, active consumers will somehow shop among dozens of plan options to see what drugs are available and at what cost with all the myriad co-pays and cost-sharing options.”


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Steven Welzer

The editor of Green Horizon Magazine, Steve has been a movement activist for many years (he was an original co-editor of DSA’s “Ecosocialist Review”).