Case for bundled pay made

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Large-scale bundling of government reimbursements is needed, say researchers who have studied the topic.

Post-acute care was the fastest growing major healthcare spending category for government programs between 1994-2009, according to Harvard University researcher Amitabh Chandra, Ph.D., and co-authors.

They conclude that post-acute care providers must be important players in any healthcare payment reform.

“It remains to be seen whether separate bundling schemes for acute and post-acute care would perform better than large bundles that included both,” Chandra stated. “However, we expect that the latter would produce greater efficiency gains by aligning the incentives of providers, and by allowing them flexibility to choose where patients received care at acute or post-acute care facilities.”

The Chandra team's article appeared in the May issue of Health Affairs.

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