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Report: Large Groups Are More Efficient
A recent analysis of medical research on health care organizations suggests that larger and more organized physician groups offer the most efficient care. In essence, the analysis concludes that physician groups need to be larger, more cohesive, and more closely affiliated with each other than they are now.
In other words, the cottage industry of having largely disparate physician groups of all sizes is inefficient and contributes to some of the most difficult problems inherent in the health care system today, such as overuse, underuse, and misuse of care, the analysis shows. The analysis is contained in a report, Physician Organization in Relation to Quality and Efficiency of Care: A Synthesis of Recent Literature, by Laura A. Tollen, MPH, a senior health policy leader at the Kaiser Permanente Institute for Health Policy, in Oakland, Calif. The report was published by The Commonwealth Fund in New York (at www.commonwealthfund.org).
Physicians at the Core
While health policy professionals agree that a more organized delivery system will help prevent underuse, overuse, and misuse of care and would foster the efficient delivery of evidence-based care, there is confusion over the definition of the term “organized delivery systems,” the report said. Also, a redesigned delivery system would require an infrastructure largely absent from the predominant forms of physician practice today, it added.
Three specific attributes of physician groups help define them as organized delivery systems and those groups that have these attributes have been studied in ....
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