Aetna CEO Sees Retail Market in Health Care

Jan 16, 2014

Mark Bertolini is CEO of Aetna.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

Health care costs are going to be increasingly shifted to consumers. That was the message from Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini at a presentation Wednesday.

The Hartford-based executive says he also believes employers will continue to step back from their role in health care, allowing employees to buy subsidized coverage through exchanges. Bertolini was speaking at a health care conference organized by JP Morgan.

He told the audiences his industry is about to become much more consumer driven. "Today, 41 percent of the health care dollar is paid for by consumers, either through premium sharing, or through benefits sharing," he said. "It won’t be long before it’s over 50 percent. And as our government considers tax changes and things like the employee deductibility of health insurance, we believe that a retail market is not far away."

Bertolini said the change should mean that affordability becomes the driving factor in health care in coming years.