What Would Happen if Large Firms Offered MSA's?

Health Affairs
Vol. 19, No. 3
May/June 2000
Pauly, M.V., Percy, A., Herring, B., and J. Rosenbloom
pp. 165-72

This paper reports the results of a survey of more than 500 health benefit specialists about the advice they would give to medium-size and large employers on offering a tax-advantaged medical savings account (MSA). About 42 percent of respondents would recommend an MSA combined with a catastrophic health plan, while a third would advise against such a plan. When presented with a specific example of an MSA package that would be attractive to a large fraction of workers, the percentage of benefit specialists favoring adding an MSA option rose to 74 percent. However, respondents generally did not believe that most workers would choose the MSA, especially if the alternative were a health maintenance organization (HMO).

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