Friday, April 28, 2006

Adults Ambivalent About Higher Payments to High Quality Providers

A Wall Street Journal Online/Harris Interactive Health-Care Poll shows that many U.S. adults believe it is fair to assess healthcare quality, but they are ambivalent and confused about whether or not payments to doctors and hospitals should be linked to quality metrics.

Half of all adults believe there are fair and reliable ways to measure and compare the quality of care provided by different hospitals and medical groups. However, only one in five (19 percent) think it would be fair for patients to pay more to be treated by healthcare organizations that have been shown to provide better care. Furthermore, only 14 percent said they themselves would be willing to pay a significantly higher premium for such care.

Compared to individual patients, a higher percentage (33 percent) of adults favor health insurance plans paying more to hospitals and medical groups that have been shown to provide better care. However this is down from 44 percent in 2003.


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