Finding Value in Health Care

Cutting Costs, Not Corners

In the wake of the June 2012 Congressional Budget Office prediction that health care spending on Medicare, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program would increase from 5.4 percent of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) in 2012 to about 10 percent of GDP in 2037, this report closely examines the efforts of 18 diverse medical professional societies to identify potential cost-cutting measures.

Generally focused on ways to better ensure patients get the right care at the right time and engaging patients in their health and health care, the groups consistently advocate for using evidence-based care and incorporating patient preferences into care decisions. Their recommendations generally fall into four categories, including: 1) reducing unnecessary care – particularly imaging and tests/screenings; 2) engaging with patients and educating them about the concept of value; 3) improving system infrastructure – specifically health information technology; and 4) promoting improved care coordination through new payment and delivery models.