Regarding the recent Vital Signs blog post Does the U.S. have the right mindset for value-based care? (ModernHealthcare.com, Feb. 24), I believe we do have the right mindset for value-based care, but we need to understand what it means and educate the consumers of healthcare. When accountable care organizations were rolled out, I am aware of one CEO who actually sent letters to his community explaining what ACOs were and how patient care would be coordinated and, hopefully, improved.
We don't engage our patients enough and don't do it well among our peers in healthcare.
Population health as a term is new, but we have always been responsible for delivering high-quality/value healthcare and some integrated delivery networks have been offering a continuum of care for more than a decade, owning the patient life from birth to grave and trying to do the right thing in preventive care, avoidable admissions, avoidable readmissions, etc.
I remember 15 years or more ago having a conversation with our chief financial officer about why I was checking 30-day readmissions. It was for clinical issues, as opposed to financial. We need a balanced approach/scorecard to operate efficiently and effectively in a value-based care model.