What Is the Empirical Basis for Paying for Quality in Health Care?

  • Rosenthal M
  • 20


    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • N/A


    Citations of this article.


Despite more than a decade of benchmarking and public reporting of quality problems in the health care sector, changes in medical practice have been slow to materialize. To accelerate quality improvement, many private and public payers have begun to offer financial incentives to physicians and hospitals based on their performance on clinical and service quality measures. The authors review the empirical literature on paying for quality in health care and comparable interventions in other sectors. They find little evidence to support the effectiveness of paying for quality. The absence of findings for an effect may be attributable to the small size of the bonuses studied and the fact that payers often accounted for only a fraction of the targeted provider's panel. Even in nonhealth settings, however, where the institutional features are more favorable to a positive impact, the literature contains mixed results on the effectiveness of analogous pay-for-performance schemes. © 2006 Sage Publications.

Author-supplied keywords

  • centers for medicare and
  • financial incentives
  • head of the federal
  • medicaid services
  • pay for performance will
  • quality
  • s no question that
  • said thomas
  • scully
  • the
  • there
  • work

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in

Find this document


  • M. B. Rosenthal

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free