Why Michael Porter Makes So Much Sense

December 17, 2009

Last night I heard Michael Porter speak at the Cleveland Clinic. Author of Redefining Healthcare, among other books, he drove home his approach to value-based competition in health care. He has many quotable, provocative statements on health care:

  • fee for service model is toxic to improving health outcomes
  • Competition must be based on results.
  • Competition should center on medical conditions over the full cycle of care.
  • Results information to support value-based competition must be widely available. (aka, disease registries)
  • increasing value actual reduces cost.

He also reemphasizes some basic principles that are strongly backed by evidence – high volume regional medical centers typically have better outcomes that low volume centers. But he acknowledged that consumers must realize that local care may not be the best care for especially for complex conditions.  Do you want to get your total knee replacement at a hospital which does one a week or 1400 per year? Not that volume is everything but consumers need to have the data available to make wise choices, outcomes data in particular.

He admitted some disappointment in the current health care reform because it does not change the incentives toward value-based competition. See How Reform Went Wrong.

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