Adding a spending per beneficiary measure to the Hospital Value-Based Purchasing Program in 2015 while decreasing the weight of the quality measures allowed some lower quality hospitals to receive bonuses, according to study published this week in Health Affairs. “High-quality low-spending hospitals received the greatest financial benefit from the program,” the authors note. “In this respect, [the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’] achieved its goal with the new spending measure.” However, they said hospital quality “had a weak and inconsistent association with spending,” and suggested CMS consider incorporating a minimum quality threshold into the program.

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