In the second installment of our value-based care series, Curation Health’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Matt Lambert, provides insight on the critical importance of physician engagement and involvement in the transition to value-based care.
By Matt Lambert, MD
The urgent need for the transition to value-based care from fee-for-service (FFS) only threatens to add further burden to physicians who are already at the breaking point. Still, the answer to making sure your value-based care (VBC) strategy has staying power is deeply rooted in how physicians are engaged as part of ongoing VBC transition plans.
Considering an end-to-end strategy for driving physician behavior change is a key part of solving the complexity of VBC. To start, here are three core priorities to consider as they relate to driving physician engagement and adoption of VBC:
- Prioritize a physician champion — Healthcare organizations need to ensure they have at least one fully committed physician champion as part of VBC. A physician champion is a critical team member who can serve as a conduit between administration and physicians on the front lines of care. If they are brought into the transition and understand the process at hand, they can serve as a trusted bullhorn that consistently communicates needed changes — and the reasons behind them — in a way that will more fully resonate with the physician audience. Physician leaders can also help address issues before they become full-blown problems, which is a critical part of strong change management within a healthcare organization.
- Provide physicians with the tools and support to streamline change — Today, many providers and payers are asking physicians to take a new VBC-focused approach to documentation without giving them the tools and support to do just that. Electronic health records simply were not built for a value-based care world. In order to drive sustainable changes in physician adoption of value-driven care without further burdening them with new documentation responsibilities, physicians need a new set of tools and support structures that arm them with the most important patient insights before the patient visit and also at the point-of-care.
- Consider updates to current compensation models — If you want physicians to change, you need to communicate two things to them: 1) the impact this change will have on their patients versus continuing to serve them in FFS models of care, and 2) the amount of money they are leaving on the table by not properly documenting patient encounters to align with VBC. The saying “money talks” is true in healthcare, too — and even more so when we are talking about incenting physicians to change how they approach patient visits and document care. If providers and payers want physicians to change, they need to make both a clear human and a financial case for this pivot.
In order to succeed in value-based care, providers and payers must ensure physician leadership has a strong voice in decision-making and an ongoing seat at the table. For more information on how Curation Health can support your provider or payer organization’s transition to value-based care, please reach out to: [email protected].