As Obamacare Looms, Insurers Look Beyond Fee-For-Service Medicine, Say Execs

The nation's largest health plans say they are rapidly moving toward transparency and away from paying doctors and hospitals on a fee-for-service basis, four insurance executives said this morning at Forbes Healthcare Summit 2013.

The nation’s largest health plans say they are rapidly moving toward transparency and away from paying doctors and hospitals on a fee-for-service basis, four insurance executives said this morning at Forbes Healthcare Summit 2013.

UNH -0.38%

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UnitedHealth Group (UNH), Humana (HUM) and several Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans represented at the summit say their efforts will be a significant step by those paying for health care in the U.S. to move further away from fee-for-service medicine that rewards treating illness to a system that pays doctors and hospitals to keep patients healthy.

“It is a fundamentally different way of practicing,” Gail Boudreaux, chief executive officer at UnitedHealthcare, subsidiary of the nation’s largest insurer, UnitedHealth Group, said in the Allen Room at Jazz at Lincoln Center.

The insurers say the moves will come in various forms. They will include bundled payments as well as aggressively negotiating contracts with doctor practices that operate “patient-centered medical homes” as well as so-called accountable care organizations (ACOs), a rapidly emerging health care delivery system that rewards doctors and hospitals for working together to improve quality and rein in costs.

Read the full story here: http://onforb.es/1c471Fi

Source: Forbes