Half of nation's primary care physicians have negative view of quality metrics

A new survey from The Commonwealth Fund and The Kaiser Family Foundation asked primary care providers—physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants—about their experiences with and reactions to recent changes in health care delivery and payment.

  • While doctors' views are generally positive regarding the impact of health information technology on quality of care, physicians are more divided on the use of medical homes and accountable care organizations.
  • Overall, providers are more negative about the increased reliance on quality metrics to assess their performance and about financial penalties.

  • Many physicians expressed frustration with the speed and administrative burden of Medicaid and Medicare payments.

While half of primary care physicians say the increased use of quality metrics to assess performance and financial penalties for unnecessary hospital admissions or readmissions are having a negative impact on quality of care, only 22% and 12%, respectively, say the impact is positive.

Re: use of health information technology, half of physicians and nearly two-thirds of nurse practitioners and physician assistants view the increased use as a positive for quality, far more than those with a negative view.

Three in 10 primary care physicians say they participate in an accountable care organization, 30% of whom have a positive view and 24% a negative view of its impact on quality.