Edmund Pezalla, MD, Discusses How Consumers Can Have a More Active Role in Healthcare Decision Making

Edmund J. Pezalla, MD, MPH, national medical director, Aetna Pharmacy Management, says Aetna engages consumers in decision-making in a variety of ways. The insurer provides tools for the employed population, which include virtual people and other digital programs about benefit designs. They also offer tools for the general population, which include iTriage to help them find a provider or facility. All of the health plan’s tools increase consumers’ access and allow them to compare costs.
“For patients who are in the exchanges, both the public and the private exchanges, [these tools] help them to make decisions about what kind of benefit will work for them in their point of life,” Dr Pezalla says. “There’s a lot of things that can help them to choose a plan—and it’s not just a matter of cost or choosing just on ‘I’ve heard of that doctor and hospital’—but choosing a plan that will work for them, both in terms of their medical situation and their financial situation.”

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