Steven D. Shapiro, MD, Opines on the Benefits and Risks of Hospitals as Health Insurers

Steven D. Shapiro, MD, executive vice president, chief medical and science officer, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, says healthcare reform's biggest benefit is that it is leading care from a system that is volume based to one that is value based.

Steven D. Shapiro, MD, executive vice president, chief medical and science officer, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, says healthcare reform’s biggest benefit is that it is leading care from a system that is volume based to one that is value based.

“As we move from being paid more to do more and filling beds in hospitals, to managing premium, the advantage of understanding population health—either to have a different relationship with an insurer or to be an insurer oneself—can only be good in a new world.”

He suggests it is difficult to change the existing culture of many hospitals. In order to do so, there must be an appropriate infrastructure to support population health management.

Dr Shapiro adds that the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s main focus is quality. In using analytics, they are able study pathways and reduce variation in care, therefore becoming more efficient at lowering costs while improving quality.