Value-Based Approaches for Emergency Care in a New Era

Medford-Davis, L. et al. Annals of Emergency Medicine. Published online: January 5 2017

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Although emergency departments (EDs) play an integral role in the delivery of acute unscheduled care, they have not been fully integrated into broader health care reform efforts. Communication and coordination with the ambulatory environment remain limited, leaving ED care disconnected from patients’ longitudinal care.

In a value-based environment focused on improving quality, decreasing costs, enhancing population health, and improving the patient experience, this oversight represents a missed opportunity for emergency care. When integrated with primary and subspecialty care, emergency care might meet the needs of patients, providers, and payers more efficiently than yet realized.

This article uses the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System from the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act as a framework to outline a strategy for improving the value of emergency care, including integrating quality and resource use measures across health care delivery settings and populations, encouraging care coordination from the ED, and implementing robust health information exchange systems.

Read the full abstract here

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