Why hospitals shouldn't worry about the transition to value-based care

Although many healthcare providers are in the process of transitioning from fee-for-service care to value-based care, many are wary of the model, according to Information Week.

Three quarters of healthcare providers currently participate in at least one value-based payment model, according to an Availity survey. More than 60 percent believe value-based payment will dominate healthcare finance in the future, but fewer than 30 percent think the model offers an acceptable risk-reward ratio, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.

While providers don't oppose more efficient models, they are concerned because they have yet to demonstrate their value, Ryan Miller, senior VP of strategy and corporate development for Availity, told Information Week. "[The anxiety] reflects more the degree of difficulty of executing on it, rather than the intent," he said.

Despite these fears, however, hospitals have historically survived reforms that applied financial pressure, according to an analysis by Andrew Ryan, Ph.D., and Alvin Mushlin, M.D., of Weill Cornell Medical College published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

"For every policy change designed to incentivize efficiency and reduce costs, hospitals have vigorously responded to maintain their market position," wrote Ryan and Mushlin. "Despite dramatic changes in the payment and financing of hospital care over the past 60 years, with concomitant changes in technology, care delivery, and patterns of use, hospitals have remained remarkably consistent in their share of healthcare expenditures."

That doesn't mean there isn't work to be done, however, Mushlin told Information Week; indeed, it is crucial that hospitals adapt to such changes. Hospitals' historical resiliency will be an obstacle to necessary reforms "if [hospitals] don't change--if they don't respond to opportunities to make healthcare better," Mushlin said.

"When we look at the historical changes, we see that hospitals responded to changes in unexpected ways," Ryan told Information Week. "So we should expect that." Hopefully, he told the publication, hospitals will improve their integrated care delivery as their role in inpatient and outpatient care expands.

To learn more:
- read the article
- here's the analysis