Payers reveal effects of value-based care strategies: 6 study findings

Value-based care has resulted in medical cost savings, investments from commercial lines of business and an accelerated decline in fee-for-service, according to a Change Healthcare national research study.

The study, conducted by ORC International in April and commissioned by Change Healthcare, included a survey of 120 managed Medicare, managed Medicaid and commercially focused payers.

Here are six study findings:

1. Payers reported their value-based care strategies led to reducing unnecessary medical costs by 5.6 percent on average. Twenty-four percent of respondents reported medical cost savings of 7.5 percent or higher.

2. A large number of payers (77 percent) said value-based care greatly or slightly improved care quality. At the same time, 64 percent of respondents said value-based care greatly or slightly improved provider relationships, and 73 percent said they saw improvements in patient engagement, according to the study.

3. The decline of pure fee-for-service is moving faster than previously predicted. Currently, 37.2 percent of business is aligned with fee-for-service, compared to the 40.9 percent predicted for 2018.

4. Only 21 percent of payers said they could launch a new episode of care program in three to six months, and more than a third said they need up to a year.

5. Forty-three percent to 58 percent of payers reported it is very or extremely difficult to get providers interested in participating in episode-of-care programs; agree on episode definitions; and reach a consensus on budgets, risk/gain sharing and performance metrics.

6. Change Healthcare said the study also found "commercial lines are leading adoption, advancement and innovation of value-based care models and strategies."

 

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