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Press Release

USofCare Research Shows People Support Value-Based Care 4:1 Over Fee-For-Service Approach 

Published On August 8, 2023

Just Don’t Call It “Value-Based Care”

Washington, D.C. — Today, United States of Care released the findings of a research study that shed light on the widespread popularity of a patient-first care approach to health care payment and delivery (also known to policy and medical experts as “value-based care”). Patient-first care prioritizes the health outcomes of patients over the quantity of visits and encourages providers to treat patients with their whole-person health in mind. While participants supported a patient-first approach, they did not understand or resonate with the term “value-based care,” as it is most often referred to — in fact, many have a negative connotation with it. 

“Our research found that people love the promise of value-based care. They love the prospect of spending more time with their doctors, providers communicating with each other directly, and patients being treated as a whole person, instead of a collection of symptoms,” said United States of Care CEO and Co-Founder Natalie Davis. “However, we’re not talking about this vision effectively: no one understands what ‘value-based care’ is, and the term can make you think of cheaper and lesser quality services. Like ‘value brand’ items in stores. The promise of value-based care, and the political realities of it, can only happen when the general public buys-in to it.”

Some of the key findings from our research include: 

  • People desire targeted improvements to their health care experiences, and believe that the system is too fragmented with little coordination taking place between providers, too much time is spent waiting versus seeing their doctors, there is an overreliance on prescription drugs as the easiest path to address health challenges, and that people with money are prioritized in getting appointments and the care they desire. 
  • People respond best to a system that prioritizes the patient experience over quantity, and want a health care experience where their provider genuinely cares and treats them as a whole person rather than a collection of symptoms and offers solutions that address the root cause of their problems
  • When asked to choose, a model where providers are paid based on results is preferred over the existing fee-for-service model by a 4-to-1 margin. High levels of support were maintained across party identification, ethnicity, age, education, and geography.
  • People do not connect with the current name of “value-based care” and are skeptical about how it would work in practice.

Given the strong support for value-based care, the research also showed that it’s critical to message the changes and benefits simply, and to stay focused on how the approach will improve people’s experiences getting care. This includes reframing “value-based care” to “patient-first care” to emphasize the benefits of the approach. 

“Long-term success for implementing a patient-first care approach requires us to find ways to bridge the communication gap between experts and the real world. Equipped with the insights from this research on what excites people most about an approach that prioritizes quality over quantity, we can now effectively communicate why patient-first care is critical to improving our health care system,” said Davis. “We encourage policymakers, health care providers, advocates, and stakeholders at all levels to consider the insights from this research and collaborate towards building a more people-focused and personalized health care system by focusing on quality over quantity.”

The full findings of our research, including methodology and detailed insights, can be found here


About United States of Care
United States of Care is a nonpartisan organization committed to ensuring that everyone has access to quality, affordable health care.

Kevin Perez-Allen 
(714) 499-4481
[email protected]