The price is right? Changes in the quantity of services used and prices paid in response to parity

Howard H. Goldman, Colleen L. Barry, Sharon Lise T. Normand, Vanessa Azzone, Alisa B. Busch, Haiden A. Huskamp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The impact of parity coverage on the quantity of behavioral health services used by enrollees and on the prices of these services was examined in a set of Federal Employees Health Benefit (FEHB) Program plans. After parity implementation, the quantity of services used in the FEHB plans declined in five service categories, compared with plans that did not have parity coverage. The decline was significant for all service types except inpatient care. Because a previous study of the FEHB Program found that total spending on behavioral health services did not increase after parity implementation, it can be inferred that average prices must have increased over the period. The finding of a decline in service use and increase in prices provides an empirical window on what might be expected after implementation of the federal parity law and the parity requirement under the health care reform law.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)107-109
Number of pages3
JournalPsychiatric Services
Volume63
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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