Study: P4P works with proper incentives

Building on what seems to be a growing consensus, a new study concludes that pay-for-performance schemes can be effective if doctors get the right incentives.

The study, which appears in the American Journal of Managed Care, used statistical data from Bridges to Excellence pay-for-performance programs drawn from 13,500 participating physicians in four cities. The programs in question were focused on improving patient care while reducing medical errors in medical practices, as well as offering better care to diabetes patients.

Bridges to Excellence researchers found that while physician participation rose as reward dollars increased, there was no one point they could identify that was the ideal reward to drive physician participation. Researchers concluded that rewards that worked for one program might not work for another.

However, they did draw one interesting conclusion: the more health plans offer P4P, the more physicians participate. In this case, clearly, familiarity breeds comfort, not contempt.

To learn more about the study:
- read this Modern Healthcare piece (reg. req.)

Related Articles:
CMS pays $16.7M to groups in P4P demo, but few get big bucks
Insurance group pushes for P4P in reform