February 8, 2017

Participation in Bundled Payments for Care Improvement Program did not increase number of procedures

ANN ARBOR, MI — A recent analysis of Medicare fee-for-service data from 2010 through 2015 for all lower extremity joint replacements at hospitals across the United States found participation in the Bundled Payment for Care Improvement Program (BPCI) did not increase the volume of procedures between baseline and performance years. The study was conducted by the non-profit Altarum Institute’s Center for Payment Innovation (formerly the Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute/HCI3) and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

This research reaffirms other research findings focused on lowering costs of care for joint replacements. The new study also found that trends in regional demographic and market characteristics explain the increase in volume over time.

“We discovered that the initial group of BPCI participants, those that went into the program in October 2013 and January 2014, had a rate of increase between baseline and performance years that was significantly lower than the national rate,” said François de Brantes, vice president and director of Altarum’s Center for Payment Innovation. “Our findings are consistent with other studies that have shown no evidence that bundled payments are responsible for artificially increasing the volume of procedures. Changes in procedure volume are explained by other factors such as market competition, the penetration of Medicare Advantage, and the demographic characteristics of the Medicare population.”

The report, which can be accessed at www.altarum.org/BPCI-Report, was released on the first day of the National Payment Innovation Summit. Hosted by the Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA) in partnership with the Altarum Center for Payment Innovation and the Catalyst for Payment Reform, the conference runs through February 10 in Dallas.

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Sarah Litton
Manager, Communications and Public Affairs


Altarum Institute's (www.altarum.org) mission is to create a better, more sustainable future for all Americans by applying research-based and field-tested solutions that transform our systems of health and health care. Altarum employs over 400 individuals and is headquartered in Ann Arbor, Michigan, with additional offices in Portland, Maine; Silver Spring, MD; Rockville, MD; and Washington, D.C.


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