Commonwealth Care Member Survey

Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector Authority

Year: 2010, 2011, 2013

The Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector Authority (the “Health Connector”) is an independent state authority established by the landmark Massachusetts health reform law passed in 2006. The purpose of this law (known as Chapter 58) is to “expand access to health care” for Massachusetts residents. Commonwealth Care (“CommCare”) is one program administered by the Health Connector aimed at expanding access to affordable coverage. CommCare provides eligible Massachusetts’ adults with subsidized health insurance plans. In general, adult residents of Massachusetts are eligible for CommCare if their household income is below 300 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL) and if they do not have access to employer-sponsored insurance or other health insurance programs.

Market Decisions worked with the Health Connector to develop and conduct a survey of its members.  The goals for this survey were to:

  • Provide a snapshot of CommCare enrollees’ experiences concerning application, eligibility determination, enrollment, and utilization;
  • Build a foundation for longitudinal research of the CommCare population;
  • Understand opportunities for policy and programmatic improvements to the CommCare program; and
  • Understand the experiences of CommCare enrollees in comparison to the experiences of other populations, including those insured through other public and private insurance plans.

Market Decisions worked with the Health Connector staff to develop a survey.  The survey instrument was administered to a random sample of current members using a multi-mode data collection method (telephone and mail) that used a complex stratified sampling design based on plan type and plan providers.

In 2011 and 2012 the sampling plan was expanded to include oversamples of specific subpopulations of interest, including members enrolled in limited choice plans. A total of 2,100 members were interviewed over the three-year period.

Market Decisions developed the sampling and data collection methodology for the research study. Upon completion of data collection, we conducted analysis of the data including data verifications and data weighting and provided results to the Health Connector. Market Decisions provided a comprehensive research report of findings for each of the three annual administrations along with data compendium of survey results.