The growing movement towards value-based contracting can cause some hesitancy for physicians, but there are also opportunities for those willing to take on the risk. While value-based care at its core is a push towards focusing on patient outcomes rather than volume of services, physicians are benefiting from a multitude of factors that are a natural part of success in this new value-based environment.
Job security through virtual management of patients during periods of appointment slowdown, in which physicians dependent on Fee-for-Service (FFS) contracts may experience loss of revenue.
A financial stop-loss is created for taking on risks.
Precision Medicine through best practice reminders and analytics for holistic/complete patient care.
Access to technology advancements that ease the workload and gain patient time and trust.
Patient panel verification that results in stronger patient relationships.
Lower malpractice risk with value-based portfolio due to higher care quality.
Potential for large funding amounts earned with shared savings from panel management.
As physicians look at value-based contracts, they should prepare for sharing risk.
The days of “bonus payments for closing care gaps” or “pay for performance” are behind us, and risk-sharing contracts will continue to take hold. ACOs (Accountable Care Organizations) have created some of the blueprints for working in value-based contracts of risk by gathering physician groups or individuals together. In addition to joining an ACO, there are better options available for physicians to engage in these evolving payment contracts:
This risk-sharing space for physicians will continue to expand.
The complexity and management of these contracts will not only reduce costs but also will push improved care and advancements both in technology and care delivery (as we have seen with telemedicine, monitoring and homecare). “Value-based care is no longer something organizations can choose to do as a pilot or an alternative to FFS. Rather, it is a critical part of any health care organization’s short- and long-term strategy to create top-line revenue and contain costs.”[i]Value-based care may not only give physicians some job security, it may also be a best practice for future physician survival as care continues to change. Technology is ready to enable the needs created by risk-bearing contracts, by helping to not only manage the contracts but also ease physician burdens and support their best care for the patients.