Reform Bills Still Reward Quantity over Quality

Elyas Bakhtiari, for HealthLeaders Media , July 30, 2009

Yet for all the talk about the end of fee-for-service, we are waiting to see an alternative. The two bills introduced so far keep the current reimbursement system for the most part, and the public option would be based on the same Medicare payment model, only paid at a higher rate.

The Senate Finance Committee has yet to release a bill, so I may be judging the sausage before it has been made. Or perhaps the reimbursement overhaul is intended to come from the Independent Medicare Advisory Council I wrote about last week.

But where are the bundled payments that piqued the industry's interest earlier this year? Where is the reimbursement system that the Mayo Clinic asked for last week that rewards quality and evidence-based care? Where is the real change?

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Elyas Bakhtiari is a freelance editor for HealthLeaders Media.

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