Medicare’s largest value-based purchasing demonstration for hospitals, the Premier Hospital Quality Incentive Demonstration, did not reduce 30-day mortality more than hospital quality reporting alone, according to a new study in the New England Journal of Medicine. Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Veterans Affairs Boston Healthcare System examined 30-day mortality among more than 6 million patients treated for heart attack, congestive heart failure, pneumonia, or coronary-artery bypass grafting between 2003 and 2009.
“[W]e found no differences in trends in mortality between conditions for which outcomes were explicitly linked to incentives and conditions for which outcomes were not linked to incentives,” the authors conclude. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires the Department of Health and Human Services to establish a VBP program to pay hospitals for their actual performance on quality measures, rather than just the reporting of those measures, beginning in fiscal year 2013.
[ via AHA News Now ]