Friday, January 16, 2009

Sensible editorial about Medicare reimbursement

Atlanta Journal Constitution gets it right. Here's an excerpt:

The most reasonable approach would be to bundle payments to doctors, or groups of doctors, who care for patients with chronic conditions such as diabetes and congestive heart failure. The healthier the doctors keep their patients, the lower the cost to taxpayers and the higher the reimbursement rate.

Instead, Medicare still pays doctors for more than 7,000 "units of service" — ordering tests, changing medications, requiring more frequent visits from patients — all of which are billed separately. With few exceptions, there is no financial incentive for physicians to keep their per-patient cost under control.

Use this url for the full editorial

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