Pay-for-performance (P4P) reimbursement has become a popular and growing form of health care payment built on the belief that payment incentives strongly affect medical providers' behavior. By paying more to those providers who are deemed to deliver better care, the goal is to increase quality and, hopefully restrain cost growth. This article provides a brief explanation of: (1) how previous P4P plans in the U.S. have fared, along with their special relationship to primary care, and (2) how England's experience with P4P and newer versions of these kinds of plans being pursued in places such as Massachusetts might provide valuable case studies for how the U.S. and other countries can achieve meaningful reform of health care organization, delivery and finance.

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Copyright © 2011, Health Law Institute. This article first appeared in Health Law Review: 19:2 (2011), 39-43.

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