Health Care Financing Administration's new regulations for financial incentives in Medicaid and Medicare managed care: one step forward?
ABSTRACT Because financial incentives for managed care physicians may create conflicts of interests, new regulations have been instituted that will result in disclosure of certain financial incentives to the Federal Government and to some patients. Given the limitations of these regulations, health plans and physicians should take the lead in addressing concerns about the harmful effects of financial incentives. For example, public disclosure may deter unusually strong financial incentives. Purchasing coalitions, advocacy groups, and journalists should have increased access to information about physician-level incentives. These nonregulatory measures might reassure patients that managed care physicians are committed to their best interests.
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ABSTRACT: As part of a broader movement toward accountability in health care, federal and state governments have required health plans to disclose physicians' financial incentives. Available data suggest that patients have poor comprehension of the incentives and significant barriers to learning, including high trust in their physicians, reluctance to think of the physician/patient relationship in financial terms, and failure to understand the relevance of the information to their health care choices and treatment. Disclosure that conveys clearly what is at stake will increase the salience of incentive information but is also more likely to erode trust.Health Affairs 01/2000; 19(4):149-55. · 4.64 Impact Factor