"Pros and Cons of Pay-for-Performance" is an important example of a paper on the health system. Currently, the United States healthcare system is fragmented across different practices and settings. This makes it necessary for health organizations to reward health workers for their performance. The pay for performance that programs are intended to offer financial incentives to health workers if their work is outstanding (Roland, 2006). The system is designed to enhance efficiency and the quality of services in health organizations. A recent example of pay for performance establishment is the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). This essay focuses on the implications of pay for performance policies for health workers by considering the pros and cons of such policies. Pros Pay for performance is a timely system in the healthcare sector.
The current trend of privatization of the healthcare system requires a system that monitors the performance of health workers. The system should also provide a forum for evaluating the performance of health workers. Also, health workers are humans and, therefore, they respond positively to acts of appreciation. Payment for performance is an act of appreciation; therefore, it contributes to the quality of the workers’ performance. The healthcare system is prone to irregularities resulting from unclear work ethics. Therefore, the payment for performance programs enhances accountability and transparency in the healthcare sector (Rokeach, 2007). The scheme provides parameters that can be used to measure the level of transparency and accountability in a health institution. Transparency and accountability translate into quality services and performance of health workers. Cons Quality healthcare services are in the interests of all the stakeholders in the healthcare sector. However, paying for the improvement of the health sector is arguably inappropriate. Quality healthcare is among the basic rights entitled to every citizen of the USA.
Therefore, paying for the improvement of the healthcare system is an indication that people do not understand their basic rights (Trude, 2006). Also, the system indicates that people tolerate poor performance by health workers, and, therefore, the latter are not challenged to improve their performance (CMS, 2005). Pay for performance policies and programs contribute to social class differences, so they are not appropriate for national unity (Vladeck, 2008).
This is because some states and societies believe in the significance of financial incentives more than other states do. For instance, the Washington State leads other states into believing that financial incentives can change human behaviors. The diagnosis-related groups (DRG) system is among the failed hospital payment systems in the state (Geoffrey, 2007). Although DRG was intended to enhance quality performance through financial incentives, it did not meet its objectives. The system proved effective in terms of the payment received but an insufficient tool for measuring the quality of performance. Conclusion Pay for performance is a system that was rolled in the US to promote quality healthcare services by offering financial incentives to health workers. The system acts as a parameter for measuring the performance of health workers and health institutions. Besides, the system encourages health workers to add effort to their performance, thus improving health services in the country. On the other hand, quality healthcare is a fundamental right of every citizen, and thus paying for performance jeopardizes people’ s rights to quality healthcare services
CMS (2005). Medicare demonstration shows hospital quality of care improves with payments tied to quality. Retrieved from http://www.cms.gov/apps/media/press/release.asp?Counter=1729.
Geoffrey, B. (2007). Pay for performance incentive programs in healthcare. Retrieved from: http://www.leapfroggroup.org/media/file/Leapfrog-Pay_for_Performance_Briefing.pdf
Rokeach, M. (2007). The nature of human values. New York: Free Press.
Roland, M. (2006). Presentation to the 4th annual World Congress Leadership Summit on healthcare quality and pay-for-performance. Boston: MA.
Trude, S. (2006). Health plan pay-for-performance strategies. American Journal of Managed Care, 12, 537-542.
Vladeck, B. (2008). Pro & Con: Would pay for performance result in better care? Retrieved from: http://www.internalmedicinenews.com/views/commentaries/single-article/pro-amp-con-would-pay-for-performance-result-in-better-care/d5adecc0f7ef9c9705f956a75c508192.html