|Survey Shows P4P Now A Mature Srategy
Once an experiment in healthcare, pay-for-performance
(P4P) has proven itself an effective strategy for advancing quality and
efficiency, according to a new survey released by Med-Vantage Inc.
Med-Vantage Inc. released initial findings from the
fourth P4P survey it has conducted since 2004, co-sponsored by the
Leapfrog Group and the Integrated Healthcare Association (IHA).
Participating health plans now report significant gains
in achieving the program’s goals of improving quality,
efficiency, and in encouraging the adoption of technology.
To date the results represent over 75 P4P sponsors of 94
programs for physicians and hospitals. The respondents comprise of
health plans and coalitions, and in total represent over 150 million
health plan members.
The survey results show:
- Stable, Mature Processes. Most P4P programs
are now more than 5-years-old and are funded as a regular part of their
sponsors’ budgets rather than as experiments. Important issues
that were once debated are now largely settled, such as the use of
evidence-based measures from national sources and the involvement of
providers in decisions that affect them.
- Expanding Scope and Payment. P4P payments have
grown to average over 7 percent of physicians’ total compensation
and 4 percent of hospitals’ total compensation, with some
physician P4P programs producing as much as 30 percent of
physicians’ compensation. These levels ensure that performance is
important to providers. A large majority of P4P programs expanded since
2006 to include more physician specialties and also to include more
product lines. Most plan to continue expanding both the number of
providers covered and the number of areas measured.
- Major Improvements in Quality and Costs. In
just two years since the last survey, the percentage of programs that
report improvements in quality due to P4P almost doubled. Now more than
half of P4P programs cite measureable increases in their
providers’ clinical quality, the area that has been part of P4P
the longest. Other areas with major jumps in P4P effectiveness were
patient survey results, cost control and especially adoption of IT
Tom Williams, executive director of IHA, said, "This
data show that P4P has helped dispel the once strongly held belief that
we could not measure quality in healthcare. We now see P4P being used
in multiple settings to measure and improve the quality of care, cost
efficiency and use of technology. All of healthcare today is under
pressure to produce better value — better quality for the cost
expended. P4P is helping build a culture of accountably, improvement
and incentives to achieve this objective."
In addition to the P4P Survey, Med-Vantage is now
completing a survey of "transparency" initiatives, to investigate how
health plans and others give consumers information on providers’
quality and costs.
Addresses: Med-Vantage Inc., 111 Sutter St., 14 Flr., San Francisco, CA 94104; (415) 814-7100, www.medvantage.com. The Leapfrog Group, c/o Academy Health, 1150 17th St. NW, Suite 600, Washington DC 20036; (202) 292-6713, www.leapfroggroup.org. Integrated Healthcare Association, 300 Lakeside Dr., Suite 1975, Oakland, CA 946612; (510) 209-1740, www.iha.org.