Should Performance Metrics be Adjusted for Socioeconomic Status (SES)?

According to a recent draft report from the National Quality Forum (NQF) (see Draft Report for Commenting ):

“There is a concern that NQF’s current policy to not adjust performance measures for sociodemographic factors results in incorrect conclusions about quality. Coupled with use of performance measures for accountability, this could lead to greater disparities in care, due to disadvantaged populations losing access to care as providers become more hesitant to treat them. There is also concern that without proper adjustments, safety net providers may have fewer resources to treat disadvantaged populations. Therefore, the Expert Panel is recommending changes to NQF’s measure evaluation criteria and guidance for which NQF is seeking public comment. Ultimately, the goal of this work is to help the healthcare community reduce disparities in care, while simultaneously drawing accurate conclusions about the quality of care rendered.” Read More

What is it Like for the Salaried Primary Care Doctor?

Stories, like the one in Kaiser Health News point out that insurance companies are paying more attention to the primary care doctors:

“While much attention has focused on expanded coverage and online insurance bazaars, policymakers’ bigger challenge is improving Americans’ health while putting a brake on the cost of their care. The keys to that puzzle, CareFirst and many others are deciding, are the internists and general practitioners who have largely been left behind by health care’s financial boom.”

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