Involve Docs to Maximize Profits

I read this article called Involve Docs in Using Health Data, Expert Tells Health Insurers and just wanted to share my thoughts with you. I actually re-read the title when I first saw it. I thought it said Extort Docs in Using Health Data. I am probably not wrong. Anyway, here are some highlights:

  • “We have the [patient] data; we can look at cohorts, do predictive analytics … to predict where patients are likely to get in trouble and how to engage [them] in a cost-effective way,” Mendelson said Wednesday at a health policy conference sponsored by America’s Health Insurance Plans. “But it’s not enough to have the information; you have to have a connection to physicians who are actually touching the patients … That targeted intervention is really necessary to reap the benefits of the data. Data without intervention is a science experiment.”
  • Having that link with doctors is one reason “why you see plans so engaged in the healthcare delivery system — buying delivery systems, partnering with them, contracting with them, and the like,” he said. “It’s also why you see so much interest in value-based purchasing. When you bring value into the equation and compensate your providers … that’s where you can have that targeted intervention, achieve cost savings, and improve patient care.”
  • Payers have become increasingly interested in value-based purchasing contracts, especially for cost-saving reasons, Mendelson said, citing a survey his firm conducted which found that 74% of respondents listed cost savings as an advantage with value-based contracts. Other advantages lagged well behind — improved patient outcomes was cited by 44%, followed by the contracts’ assurance that the product performs as advertised (41%), and improved relations between payers and manufacturers (24%).
  • But not everyone understands the need for cost savings, he added. “I’ve had many conversations with pharmaceutical executives where they have an idea for a value-based [purchasing] program, but it won’t save the plan any money.” And yet, there are plenty of places where a value-based contract could produce a win for both sides — “cholesterol management is a great one; reducing infections in the hospital [is another],” Mendelson said.

Do not fall for this same trick again. This data only helps the insurers to save money and KEEP IT!!! Never have they passed savings down to anyone. And we have really not seen any benefits from data collecting other than to the people selling it.

Can we just stop pretending otherwise?

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