JAMA Forum: We Need to Use Better Data to Measure Quality

My latest at the JAMA Forum:

For some time, there has been a push for health insurance to pay for quality and not quantity. This has been a mantra of the current administration as it has begun to alter Medicare payment reform to reflect this philosophy. Not long ago, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) committed to making 50% of Medicare payments tied to metrics of quality by 2018.

Of course, such decisions are predicated on the idea that we are good at measuring quality. If we are going to pay hospitals differently based on their performance, then it’s absolutely mandatory that we be able to differentiate between those who deserve higher payments and those who do not. Many are concerned that our ability to do so isn’t adequate.

Those concerns are both theoretical and empirical. Go read!


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