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Legacy Infrastructure an Obstacle to Value Orientation

Analysis  |  By Philip Betbeze  
   June 29, 2018

A new HealthLeaders survey shows that while value-based payment models continue to be a central focus of healthcare providers, reorientation toward a value-based infrastructure is a difficult-to-overcome obstacle.

Infrastructure changes may be the hardest part of transforming a healthcare organization toward a value bent, according to a new survey.

According to the 2018 HealthLeaders Media Value-Based Readiness Survey, respondents said that their preparation of a value-based infrastructure may be the key challenge to healthcare providers compared with care delivery and finance, where they feel they are farther ahead.

HealthLeaders Media senior research analyst Jonathan Bees, who prepared the report, says 50% of respondents indicated their value-based infrastructure was either somewhat weak or very weak, an indication there is work to be done in this area.

“The infrastructure changes to me are the hardest part because you have an asset base that, in many cases, could be a hospital that’s been around anywhere from 40 to 80 years,” says Karen Hanlon, CPA, executive vice president, chief financial officer and treasurer at Highmark Health in Pittsburgh, and the lead advisor for the Intelligence Report, which found varying degrees of readiness in three main categories of value preparedness: 

  • Financial changes: 62% thought their preparation was very or somewhat strong, while 38% categorized their preparedness as somewhat or very weak.
  • Care delivery changes: 54% considered their preparation very or somewhat strong, while 46% said it was weak or somewhat weak.
  • Infrastructure changes: 50% considered their preparations strong or somewhat strong, while half considered them very or somewhat weak.

Infrastructure can be daunting because such investments are expensive and take longer to mature. Investments must be made in capital projects, ranging from expanding a network of urgent care centers or outpatient laboratory capabilities, to call centers and telehealth capabilities.

Respondents were more confident that they are further down the road to value in financial and care delivery changes.

Diving deeper into the report:

  • Only 3% categorized their care processes and systems as fully mature.
  • 79% described their development of value-based performance metrics as very or somewhat strong.
  • 63% described their collaborative relationships with payers as strong or very strong.
    Download the free report here.

Philip Betbeze is the senior leadership editor at HealthLeaders.

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