How to Engage Physicians in the Transition From Volume to Value-Based Care

For a hospital to successfully transition to a value-based care model, the engagement and support of affiliated physicians is needed. During a session at Becker’s Hospital Review 5th Annual Meeting, May 16 in Chicago, Lani Berman, vice president of performance services at VHA, a consortium of nonprofit providers, and Richard Parker, MD, chairman of the Cleveland Clinic’s department of orthopedic surgery, a staff member at the Clinic’s Center for Sports Health and a professor of surgery at Cleveland Clinic’s Lerner College of Medicine, discussed strategies for a successfully bringing physicians in line with hospitals’ new value-based goals.

The transition to value-based care involves three areas of “critical focus,” said Ms. Berman: optimizing cost and quality to remain competitive in the current acute care model, engaging and aligning physicians in a new value-based model and then implementing the transition to integrated care across the continuum.

At Cleveland Clinic, a physician-owned organization, physicians are already very aligned with the organization’s mission. About 60 percent of the Clinic’s physicians are employed, and the organization has a culture designed to engage and empower physicians, said Dr. Parker.

To achieve this kind of alignment, Dr. Parker recommends creating a culture of open communication and emphasizing shared goals. He also emphasizes the importance of transparent data sharing with physicians. For example, investing in a data-driven dashboard that shows physicians price discrepancies between their preferred medical supplies can help hospitals improve their bottom line in a fee-for-service world while preparing for the transition to value.

“They’ll see the trends, they’ll see the opportunities to drive down costs,” said Dr. Parker.

He also stressed the importance of open communication and ongoing education. Physicians are driven to want to acquire new knowledge, so educating them about the transition to value-based care is one of the most effective ways of aligning them with the transition.

“For physicians, if you can get them into a room under the auspices of education, the barriers come down,” and they become more receptive to doing what needs to be done to move to value-based care, said Dr. Parker.

More Articles on Physician Engagement:

Are We Trading Happy Physicians for Efficient Ones?
Study: Discussion Groups Boost Physician Well-Being
Which Specialty Has the Happiest Physicians?

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