The ACC has an excellent survey
team (better -- seriously -- than Gallup polls).
The team has a cohort of about 400 cardiologists of all subspecialties,
ethnicity, gender, and practice types who have agreed to respond quickly and
regularly to mini-survey instruments. We call this group and process CardioSurve.
The June CardioSurve panel
questions on preferred and predicted future reimbursement mechanisms revealed that,
essentially, depending upon which side of the practice fence you sit (i.e.:
Private Practices vs. Non-Private Practices) greatly determines your
current compensation source and your ideal compensation source.
(63%) of cardiologists in private practices are currently compensated on a
fee-for-service basis (FFS) exclusively; and, similarly, nearly two-thirds
(65%) of these private practice cardiologists indicate that their ideal
compensation is fee-for-service. Some of
this response seems to be related to fear that doctors
are due to be shafted regardless of what form of reimbursement is used.
Therefore stick with the devil you know -- even if it is constantly declining.
Conversely, more than
three-fourths (78%) of the cardiologists who are not in private practice
currently receive a salary as their primary source of income. However,
interesting to note is that only 57% of these cardiologists state that a salary
is their ideal form of compensation. Fee-for-service (19%) and a mixed
compensation system (22%) actually gain strength among them for ideal
compensation. This makes sense.
Salaried cardiologists deserve incentives for productivity (everybody doesn’t
work as hard) and quality (everybody doesn’t strive as effectively for better
outcomes). Incentives have to be based on relevant data comparisons—not
conjecture. That’s why the PINNACLE Registry, which
can measure individual outputs and performance related to evidenced based care,
is so critical.