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BCBSNC Sees Improved Health Quality, Lower Costs Through Financial Rewards to Physicians
Date:6/23/2009

• $4.2 million in rewards paid to doctors during Bridges to Excellence quality program • Study finds lower health care spending per patient among recognized physicians • Patients incur fewer costly imaging tests, ER visits

Chapel Hill, NC (Vocus) June 23, 2009 -- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC) has found a payoff – both in health quality measures and in lower health care spending – for encouraging physicians to meet national quality standards.

Patients of physicians meeting standards for efficiencies in practice management receive fewer high-cost imaging tests such as CT scans, a data analysis by BCBSNC shows. They also don’t visit the emergency room or medical specialists as often. As a result, annual health care spending is less per patient than for the BCBSNC customer population as a whole.

The findings are from an analysis of claims conducted by BCBSNC’s Clinical Informatics unit. The analysis was completed at the conclusion of the company’s three-year pilot for health care quality under the national Bridges to Excellence program.

“We’ve believed for years that quality improvement leads to better health outcomes and lower costs, and now we have data that demonstrates it,” said Don Bradley, MD, BCBSNC senior vice president and chief medical officer. “Our investment in Bridges to Excellence over the past three years has made a difference for patients and physicians.”

Based on the success of the Bridges to Excellence pilot, BCBSNC is considering ways to expand the concept of providing rewards and recognition to doctors meeting quality standards. Since launching the pilot in 2006, BCBSNC and its partner in Bridges to Excellence incentives, the State Health Plan for Teachers and State Employees, have paid $4.2 million in incentive compensation to participating p
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Source: PRWeb
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