Asking healthcare providers to change the way they practice is not an easy task. What about paying them to change?

We recently encountered a case where physicians were compensated for completing an educational program that was designed to enable change of practice behavior in a hospital. While not common, this approach isn't entirely new. Physicians have been incentivized by healthcare plans to alter their practice behaviors to save cost, better utilize resources, and improve patient outcomes. However, there are drawbacks as financial incentives may inadvertently promote gaming of the system. It may undermine intrinsic motivation.

As educators in the healthcare field, perhaps our inquiry should revolve around whether we are delivering pertinent educational content in formats that drive action. In an era where information is excessively abundant and easily accessible, transformative changes are necessary to enable behavioral change from healthcare professionals. Are we doing enough?

  • Feb 13, 2023