Cover: Panel Processes for Revising Relative Values of Physician Work

Panel Processes for Revising Relative Values of Physician Work

A Pilot Study

Published 1996

by James P. Kahan, Sally C. Morton, Hilary Farris, Gerald Kominski, Arthur J. Donovan

Purchase Print Copy

 Format
Add to Cart Paperback17 pages Free

In this study, a set of meetings was conducted to pilot a group-discussion-based method anchored by a reference set of services with agreed-on values for revising the Medicare Resource-Based Relative Value Scale (RBRVS). The authors focused on the method as it evolved over the sequence of meetings, rather than on whether the relative values of work obtained were more or less valid than relative values of work obtained elsewhere. Four pilot panels, composed of 46 physicians from different specialties (including primary care), were conducted to rate total physician work. One panel examined 80 urologic services, another panel examined 80 ophthalmologic services, and the last two panels considered the merit of appeals from five specialty and subspecialty societies to 68 and 48 services, respectively. Rather than using the method of ratio estimation relative to a standard service, panelists were asked to estimate magnitudes relative to an established multispecialty reference set of values. Prominent members of that reference set were graphically displayed to panelists on a "ruler." Measures included physicians' preliminary and final ratings and detailed notes of the group discussions conducted between the ratings. The authors found that a panel process for refining relative values of work is practical, provided that panelists are provided with a valid reference set for comparison purposes and provided that care is taken that all members feel comfortable engaging in the discussion. In Summer 1992, the Health Care Financing Association conducted a series of multispecialty panels based on the methods presented here to produce the 1993 RBRVS; in addition, the RBRVS Update Committee of the American Medical Association is employing group processes and a reference set in determining the relative work values of new Current Procedural Terminology codes.

Originally published in: Medical Care, v. 32, no. 11, pp. 1069-1085.

This report is part of the RAND reprint series. The Reprint was a product of RAND from 1992 to 2011 that represented previously published journal articles, book chapters, and reports with the permission of the publisher. RAND reprints were formally reviewed in accordance with the publisher's editorial policy and compliant with RAND's rigorous quality assurance standards for quality and objectivity. For select current RAND journal articles, see External Publications.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit www.rand.org/pubs/permissions.

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.