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August 7, 2019

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How to Define the Value of ID in a Quality Measurement World

IDSA clinical care members specializing in Adult ID will soon be receiving a survey to help us better gauge the current state of safety and quality measurement. This is an important component in the continuation of the Society’s work in this area. In 2018, the IDSA Quality Improvement Committee published How Do You Measure Up: Quality Measurement for Improving Patient Care and Establishing the Value of Infectious Diseases Specialists that stressed the importance of infectious diseases physicians’ proactive engagement in quality improvement and measure development as healthcare shifts from volume- to value-based compensation models.

The 2015 IDSA ID Physician Compensation Assessment indicated that

  • 11% of private practice ID physicians had compensation tied to quality metrics
  • 18% of academic medical center employed ID physicians had compensation tied to quality metrics
  • 34% of hospital/clinic employed ID physicians had compensation tied to quality metrics

The 2017 IDSA ID Physician Compensation Assessment showed a slight increase, indicating that

  • 14% (+3%) of private practice ID physicians had compensation tied to quality metrics
  • 15% (-3%) of academic medical center employed ID physicians had compensation tied to quality metrics
  • 37% (+3%) of hospital/clinic employed ID physicians had compensation tied to quality metrics

The 2019 IDSA Physician Compensation Survey is being fielded now. Your input is critical.

ID physician compensation is following the trend of the larger healthcare industry, as reported by Forbes, with Merrit Hawkins 2018 Review of Physician and Advanced Practitioner Recruiting Incentives showing that an increasing portion of physician production bonuses are based on value-based metrics. As well, the 2018 Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) Datadive Provider Compensation report indicated that 25% of all providers have compensation linked to quality and patient experience metrics.

There are currently very few safety or quality measures that reflect ID care. Without active involvement of ID physicians in quality improvement and measurement, there is a risk that payers or institutions will alter care in a way that threatens patients and public health. Understanding the role of quality improvement in the practice of ID physicians is essential to designing ID-specific quality measures, directing resources for support, and providing education.

In short, how do ID physicians demonstrate the value of ID in the value-based world that is focused on quality measurement, resource utilization, patient satisfaction, and outcomes?

To help answer that question and inform the larger IDSA quality strategy, the IDSA Quality Improvement Committee will be surveying members who specialize in adult clinical care to understand the current state of safety and quality measurement, improvement activities, and reporting in infectious disease practice. The survey will also seek to identify barriers to engaging in quality improvement, reporting, and education efforts. Please look for the survey to be emailed Aug. 19.

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