Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Proceed with caution when setting up financial incentives for general practice doctors

Date:
September 6, 2011
Source:
Wiley-Blackwell
Summary:
There is growing use of financial incentives in many countries to reward primary care practitioners who improve the quality of their services. In a new review, a team of researchers found insufficient evidence to either support or refute the practice. They conclude that policymakers need to proceed with caution before setting up an incentive scheme and think carefully about the way it is designed.

There is growing use of financial incentives in many countries to reward primary care practitioners who improve the quality of their services. After reviewing all available data in a Cochrane Systematic Review, a team of researchers found insufficient evidence to either support or refute the practice. They conclude that policymakers need to proceed with caution before setting up an incentive scheme and think carefully about the way it is designed.

Related Articles


There are hundreds of schemes in the USA, as well as in the UK, Australia and other countries where the amount doctors get paid to provide services has been arranged deliberately to try and change the way they work. The idea is to give a financial incentive that will hopefully encourage the provision of high qualitycare. One problem is that there is always the possibility that these incentive schemes may not produce any effect, or worse still have negative outcomes. For example, financial incentives applied to one disease area may 'work', but at the cost of doctors spending less time with other disease areas.

Led by Professor Anthony Scott and Dr Peter Sivey from the University of Melbourne's Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research in Australia, the researchers looked for studies that had assessed how well such incentive schemes worked in practice. Despite the popularity of these schemes, they could only find seven appropriate studies, looking at very different schemes.

"Poor study design led to substantial risk of bias in most studies. In particular, none of the studies addressed the ability of primary care physicians to opt into or out of the incentive scheme or health plan," says Sivey.

The seven studies looked at interventions covering a wide variety of health-related issues including smoking cessation, assessment of the quality of care, cervical screening, mammography screening, diabetes, childhood immunisation, chlamydia screening, and appropriate asthma medication.

"There is currently little rigorous evidence about whether financial incentives do improve the quality of primary health care, or of whether such an approach is cost-effective relative to other ways of improving the quality of care," says Sivey.

"There are ways of conducting high quality research that could find solid answers, and it is really important that we start collecting data that will address this critical issue," he adds.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wiley-Blackwell. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Wiley-Blackwell. "Proceed with caution when setting up financial incentives for general practice doctors." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 September 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110906191628.htm>.
Wiley-Blackwell. (2011, September 6). Proceed with caution when setting up financial incentives for general practice doctors. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110906191628.htm
Wiley-Blackwell. "Proceed with caution when setting up financial incentives for general practice doctors." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110906191628.htm (accessed November 29, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Rural India's Low-Cost Sanitary Pad Revolution

Rural India's Low-Cost Sanitary Pad Revolution

AFP (Nov. 28, 2014) — One man hopes his invention -– a machine that produces cheap sanitary pads –- will help empower Indian women. Duration: 01:51 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Research on Bats Could Help Develop Drugs Against Ebola

Research on Bats Could Help Develop Drugs Against Ebola

AFP (Nov. 28, 2014) — In Africa's only biosafety level 4 laboratory, scientists have been carrying out experiments on bats to understand how virus like Ebola are being transmitted, and how some of them resist to it. Duration: 01:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO Says Male Ebola Survivors Should Abstain From Sex

WHO Says Male Ebola Survivors Should Abstain From Sex

Newsy (Nov. 28, 2014) — WHO cites four studies that say Ebola can still be detected in semen up to 82 days after the onset of symptoms. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

AFP (Nov. 27, 2014) — The Ebola epidemic sweeping Sierra Leone is having a profound effect on the country's children, many of whom have been left without any family members to support them. Duration: 01:02 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins