Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for the 'Physician Compensation' Category

FFS vs. Capitation Reimbursement: Responses by Physicians and Medical Students

How do people respond to financial incentives?  In the medical world, physicians often are paid fee-for-service (FFS) or capitation.  Physicians receiving FFS reimbursement receive additional compensation for each additional service they do.  For instance, physicians under FFS receive twice as much compensation for 2 office visits as they would for 1 office visit.  On the other hand, […]

Read the rest of this entry »

HWR and Kaiser

Kaiser Permanente is opening a medical school in 2019.  How will the school be different from current medical schools?  The L.A. Times reports: …its approach will differ markedly from that of many established medical schools. It will hew closer to the company’s commitment of rapidly adopting new technology and adhering to the latest medical evidence […]

Read the rest of this entry »

International perceptions of ability to manage complex patients

In an international study using data from the Commonwealth Fund, Robin Osborn and co-authors survey primary care doctors in the United States and nine other industrialized countries on how well they are able to treat patients with complex needs. They found that the percentage of doctors that feel that their practice is well-prepared to manage […]

Read the rest of this entry »

How do patients choose their physician?

What matters to patients when choosing a physician?  Expertise?  Bedside manner?  Previous relationship with the physician? To answer this question, a paper by Groenewoud et al. (2015) conducts a discrete choice experiment (DCE) survey of Dutch patients with knee arthrosis, chronic depression, or Alzheimer’s disease.  They found that patient preferences for their physician depended on the disease. The […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Funding Physician Medical Education

Each year, more than $15 billion of taxpayers’ money is spent to support physicians in residency training. About one-third of this amount comes from Medicaid, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Health Resources and Services Administration. The remaining nearly $10 billion flows through the Medicare program, primarily to academic medical centers via a complex […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Are doctors and nurses to blame for high health care costs?

A study by Glied, Ma and Pearlstein (2015) says the answer is no. High worker wages are a reasonable place to start for explaining why US healthcare costs are so much higher than other countries as about half of healthcare spending is spent worker compensation. The study by Glied, Ma and Pearlstein does find that: […]

Read the rest of this entry »

What is MIPS?

Yesterday I posted about MIPS, the new Medicare physician reimbursement program set to begin in 2019.  The Health Affairs blog provides a nice summary of some of the changes. First and probably most importantly, the formulaic approach to setting base payment rates is gone, replaced with automatic increases for all doctors from 2015 through 2019. For […]

Read the rest of this entry »

‘Doc fix’ fixed?

This may be the case.  Fox News reports: The Senate overwhelmingly passed legislation permanently overhauling how Medicare pays physicians late Tuesday in a rare show of near-unanimity from Congress. The legislation headed off a 21 percent cut in doctors’ Medicare fees that would have taken effect Wednesday, when the government planned to begin processing physicians’ […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Robots vs. Physicians?

The Economist reports that adverse events occur relatively frequently when physicians insert catheters: placing needles inside veins deep in the body is notoriously difficult. Some 15-30% of attempts suffer complications, mainly punctured arteries that can lead to infection (around 250,000 cases in America annually), but also bleeding, collapsed lungs and even cardiac arrest. Failure rates in […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Does your doc want to be in an ACO?

The answer is likely “It depends.”  To see why this is the case, let us consider the case of some proposed health reforms in Switzerland to force physicians into managed care (MC) networks.  As described in Rischatsch (2015): In 2012, Switzerland held a referendum…aimed at encouraging the nationwide development of MC networks. Among other changes…the legal […]

Read the rest of this entry »