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Incentivising improvements in health care delivery: a response to Adam Oliver

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Publication details

JournalHealth Economics, Policy and Law
DatePublished - 9 Feb 2015
Issue number3
Number of pages7
Pages (from-to)351-356
Original languageEnglish


Financial and reputational incentives are increasingly common components in strategies to performance manage the medical profession. Judging the impacts of incentives is challenging, however, and the science of framework design remains in its infancy. Oliver's taxonomy therefore offers a useful and timely guide to the approaches that are most likely to be successful (and unsuccessful) in the field of health care. The use of incentives to date has focused on process measures and a narrow range of outcomes, a pragmatic approach that has produced some substantial quality gains within the constraints of existing health care systems. Improvement of specific technical aspects of quality may, however, have been achieved at the expense of trust, cooperation and benevolence. Deficits in these indispensible virtues will undermine any attempt to performance manage the medical and allied professions.

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