In a study of Medicaid recipients in the state of Florida, a survey sought to test how important the amount of the reward was to parents of children enrolled in Medicaid in Florida. Parents were asked whether their child would engage in four healthy behaviors if a reward were given. The amount of the incentive was randomized, so that respondents either were told that the reward was $10, $25, or $50. In the survey, parents of Medicaid recipients were asked whether their child would engage in five healthy behaviors (enrolling in an exercise class, annual dentist visit, annual well child visit, not missing any primary care visits, and enrolling in a weight loss program) if given an incentive.
The majority of respondents noted that with an incentive their child would “very likely” have a well child visit and a dental visit in the next year (72% and 79% respectively, among those not reporting a visit in the last year). Just over half (58%) reported that with an incentive their child would “very likely” take an exercise class and a similar percentage reported their overweight child would enroll in a weight loss program. Respondents were least likely to say that an incentive would keep their child from ever missing a primary care doctor’s visit. One focus group participant commented, “That wouldn’t work. We don’t miss appointments intentionally.”