Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2013
Practice innovations webinar series offers CME credit
Two newly archived AMA webinars explain what it means to deliver value-based care, especially as many payers are rapidly transitioning to new payment models that reward high-quality and cost-effective care.
The webinars are the first in a new series hosted by members of the AMA Innovators Committee highlighting why current reform efforts will succeed where others have failed.:
The first webinar, "Here it comes... Delivery reform, payment reform and everything in between," presents the basics of what it means to deliver value-based care and, more importantly, why change is necessary. It address what change means for your practice as Medicare and other payers rapidly transition to new payment models that reward high quality and cost-effective care.
The second webinar, "You can't do it all, so don't try: Optimizing practice workflow to increase value," provides insights that help physicians identify and implement strategies designed to foster efficient use of staff resources, ensure physician oversight and improve care coordination in their practices.
Physicians can earn continuing medical education (CME) credit in the form of AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ by viewing these webinar recordings before the end of 2013. AMA members can participate in these CME activities for free; nonmembers can do so for $30. If you're not an AMA member, join today.
Additional webinars will be hosted each month and archived for physicians to view and earn CME credit. Learn more about future webinars in the series.
AMA president: Bigger insurers not usually better
Patients across the United States are vulnerable to health plan monopoly power, AMA President Jeremy A. Lazarus, MD, writes in a recent guest column on physician blog KevinMD.com.
"When health plans have merged, they've said that a bigger insurance company would drive down premiums," Dr. Lazarus writes. "[But] both research and anecdotal evidence indicate that bigger health insurers are not better."
Pointing to the AMA's newly released study Competition in Health Insurance: A Comprehensive Study of U.S. Markets, Dr. Lazarus notes that higher premiums, watered-down benefits and growing insurer profitability suggest that a lack of health insurance market competition is harming patients and physicians.
According to the AMA analysis, anti-competitive conditions are present in 70 percent of 385 metropolitan areas in the United States, and nearly 40 percent of metropolitan areas have a single health insurer with a majority share of the commercial health insurance market.
Dr. Lazarus said the study underscores the need for antitrust authorities to more vigorously examine the anti-competitive effects of proposed health insurer mergers and for the new health insurance exchanges to include patients and physicians in their governing structures.
Copies of this study are available through the AMA Bookstore. AMA members can order a copy free of charge, while non-members can purchase a copy for $150.