Doctor and Hospital scorecards on the way

U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Mike Leavitt said yesterday that a possible “scorecard” that measures how well a hospital or doctor does on a treatment — and how much they charge for it — could help transform U.S. health care.

Leavitt also suggested that the federal government will strongly encourage private insurers and employers to help develop and use such a scorecard. This makes sense so that patients can make informed choices who to receive their health care from and where to have services performed.

My question is this — how will the measurements be taken? As people rate things so incredibly subjectively based on current-state emotions and very little logic (at least from what I’ve seen), the measurement of such a “scorecard” must be given the highest design priority or hospitals and doctors will only change their offerings to suit the scorecard, not patient care.

Unless the specific and objective measurement methods are detailed to the American public on this issue, I see this as a complete waste of time — although the overall suggestion is very sound.

Author by Brian White