To many, the phrase “consumer-driven health care” is another way of saying “higher deductibles and co-pays.” Make it more expensive to access medical care, the logic goes, and employees will think harder about whether that doctor’s visit is really necessary.

Bart Halling, vice president for consumer-driven and emerging markets for UMR, the third-party administrator unit of United HealthCare, thinks differently about consumer-driven medicine. It’s still his job to persuade employees to think carefully about the money they spend on health care. His methods, however, don’t always involve making it harder to go to the doctor.

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