Hospital CEO Pay Out of Alignment with Quality of Care
"That advice seems strange, since every hospital CEO I know who receives incentive compensation already has quality-related goals, as did approximately three-quarters of CEOs who were surveyed recently."
A more likely scenario, Browner wrote, was that "hospitals are concerned about, measure, and reward different quality metrics" than the ones the Harvard researchers focused on, for example, severity-adjusted sepsis survival rates.
"Indeed, the profusion of quality metrics challenges the ability of hospital quality departments to keep up with measuring and reporting them."
"Indeed," he added, "some hospital CEOs have likely figured out how to game the system by working to align their incentive compensation with the metrics that their hospital usually achieves—and then trumpeting those results. Thus, the opportunity that the authors have identified is to standardize how quality is measured, rather than allowing the indiscriminate proliferation of metrics to continue."
Cheryl Clark is senior quality editor and California correspondent for HealthLeaders Media. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.
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