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Michael Thompson on Promoting Use of High-Value Services Over Low-Value Ones

Employers have been talking about low-value care for years, but they’re trying to identify to remove the use of those services, said Michael Thompson, president and chief executive officer of the National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions.


Employers have been talking about low-value care for years, but they’re trying to identify to remove the use of those services, said Michael Thompson, president and chief executive officer of the National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions.

Transcript

How are employers trying to identify and remove low-value care services?

We talk about low-value care, we’ve been talking about low-value care for a lot of years, what we’re finding is that there continues to be a lot of inappropriate use or low-value care reimbursed under the plans. Sometimes I think we’re trying to attack it through a plan design standpoint. Recently, for example, we’ve identified that low-value medications are often being covered on a formulary. I think what we’re envisioning, and we are advocating for, is that’s often being done for other reasons than to provide the best care to employees, and so we’re attacking it from that standpoint.

Also, educational. There’s a lot of efforts through education through things like Choosing Wisely, to help people understand what their choices are and when is care appropriate. In addition, I think there is a general move to higher quality providers who do a better job of screening for appropriateness. And some of the centers of excellence programs that have been put in place have demonstrated some of their best value, in part, by providing the best care when it’s needed and not providing the care when it’s not.

 
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