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Healthcare organizations will continue transitioning to value-based care despite political uncertainty, survey shows

There could be a slowdown of the momentum created by the ACA towards care coordination and value-based care initiatives, analysts say.

Jeff Lagasse, Associate Editor

Despite uncertainties in the healthcare market, heightened by the recent House passage of the GOP healthcare bill, most health system leaders are sticking to their existing business strategies, and will keep their organizations moving towards value-based care, according to a new leadership survey by BDC Advisors, a national healthcare advisory firm.

The survey findings were published this week in the May-June issue of Healthcare Financial Management Association's Leadership magazine. The interviews with a sample of healthcare leaders in nine states coincided with the introduction, withdrawal and subsequent passage of the AHCA, and indicated that despite regulatory uncertainty, the underlying drivers of the healthcare market remain essentially the same as prior to the Republican victory in November.

Leaders feel their organizations face many of the same challenges they did in 2011 when the Affordable Care Act was introduced: Revenues not keeping up with cost growth is still an issue, quality and value remain ongoing concerns and breaking even on government programs is also still a challenge.

[Also: Value-based programs yield lower readmission rates, significant cost savings, JAMA study shows]

While the potential capping of Medicaid funding and the fate of the health insurance exchanges are wild-card issues, commercial insurance will remain the main avenue of growth, scale will remain critical and the move towards value-based reimbursement will continue.

Even with the House passage of AHCA, significant uncertainty remains in an environment where organizations are hunkering down and focusing on "no-regret moves," while slowing down or halting new capital or infrastructure investments. The authors expect that, as a result, there could be a slowdown of the momentum created by the ACA towards care coordination and value-based care initiatives.

The study said the organizations facing the biggest challenges will be providers with significant exchange and Medicaid business, and that cutbacks in these already low-margin business lines are likely to have a disproportionately negative impact on those organizations.

Twitter: @JELagasse

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