A Purchaser's Ability to Spur Change in the System


At Cambia Grove, we aim to break down barriers to better enable the flow of innovation into the health care system. One of the ways we do this is through our Solution Series which convenes stakeholders around high-priority topics, identifying specific challenges and opportunities associated with each topic and catalyzing solutions to support systemwide transformation. 

One challenge identified in fall 2018 during a Barriers to Innovation Roundtable was Payment and Incentives. In other words, how traditional health care services and new innovations are paid for. One of the roadblocks in health care is that the system is not directly incentivized to innovate since most of the industry currently operates on a fee-for-service model, with partial movement toward value-based care.

In February, we were pleased to welcome Dr. Robert S. Mecklenburg, Medical Director, Center for Healthcare Solutions at Virginia Mason Medical Center for an Under the Boughs discussion on health care incentive structures and the impact they have on cost and innovation, as well as opportunities for change based on real-world examples.

Dr. Mecklenburg shared insight into organizations that are currently working toward transformation, with a common theme emerging throughout: purchasing power. He shared real-world examples of employer groups like Starbucks and Walmart, driving meaningful change in the health care system. Dr. Mecklenburg also emphasized that while purchasing power is more obvious among large organizations, small to medium-sized companies can advocate for better incentive structures through marketplace collaboration.

Overall, the theory is if the way health care is paid for is aligned with value, the health care delivery system will be further incentivized to pull innovation from the changemaker community to improve quality and affordability. With purchasing power playing a key role in this structural shift, we urge the community to listen to our 5 Points of Health Care™: The Purchaser Panel event recording. 

This event provided attendees with a deep dive into the purchaser vertical in health care and gives attendees insight into the areas of opportunity for innovation. Panelists will also highlight innovative trends within the purchasing community and focus on opportunities for purchasers to leverage their power to drive change.

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Watch the full Under the Boughs with Dr. Mecklenburg recording here.  

About Madelyn Scott