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Massachusetts hospitals and doctors may be put on budget

Boston Globe, July 17, 2009

A Massachusetts commission has recommended that the state dramatically change how doctors and hospitals are paid, essentially putting providers on a budget as a way to control exploding healthcare costs and improve the quality of care. The 10-member commission, which includes key legislators and members of Governor Deval Patrick's administration, voted unanimously to largely scrap the current system, in which insurers typically pay doctors and hospitals a negotiated fee for each individual procedure or visit. The arrangement is widely seen as leading to unneeded tests and procedures.