CMS yesterday posted information on what Medicare pays for 30 common elective procedures and other hospital admissions. The theory is that this information will “make health care more affordable and accessible”.
This theory is grounded on the presumption that there is a relationship between price and quality, and, more importantly, that the price controls mandated by the feds have any relation to the market or the quality of the care and service, this is, well, interesting data.
What’s important for physicians to be aware of is that the Bush administration is set on releasing the data they have on individual providers, be they hospitals, physicians, etc, as they try to move the high cost of health insurance and medical care from employers to employees – preferably with no concurrent shift in employer dollars. The data collected – number of procedures, utilization rates, and so on – may be displayed at some point in the future. At some point, outcome data will be derived and made available, much the way survival rates for CABG procedures are posted in some states (such as New York).
It would be interesting to see what’s going on in the hospitals you use. 🙂