Pay-for-Performance May Improve Disease Management in Primary Care

(HealthDay News) — Pay-for-performance measures have an overall positive effect on disease management, according to a review published in the Journal of Evidence-Based Medicine.

Yifei Lin, from the West China School of Medicine at Sichuan University, and colleagues conducted a systematic literature review to identify evidence of the impact of pay-for-performance on behavior of primary care physicians and patient outcomes.

Forty-four studies were included in the analysis. The researchers found that, overall, pay-for-performance had a positive effect on the management of disease. The positive effect varied by baseline medical quality and practice size. Most of the studies analyzed were retrospective and observational, and had high levels of heterogeneity.

“The implementation of [pay-for-performance] could bring about new problems regarding to the inequity of medical care, patient dissatisfaction, and growth of medical costs,” the researchers wrote.


  1. Lin Y, Yin S, Huang J, Du L. Impact of Pay for performance on Behavior of Primary Care Physicians and Patient Outcomes. J Evid Based Med. 2015;doi:10.1111/jebm.12185.