Research Agenda

Directed by  Mark Fendrick at VBID Health, the Research Consortium for Health Care Value Assessment brings together researchers working in health value to collaborate, share findings and develop research ideas to aid decisionmakers seeking to address health care inefficiencies.

Ongoing research within the consortium is focused on broadening how we think about, measure and evaluate value in health care. A long-term objective of the consortium is development and use of methods for comprehensive measurement of the magnitude and cost of low-value care. Research has led to a framework for a mixed-methods approach for comprehensive identification and measurement of use of health care services that add little or no clinical value. The framework describes methods for using administrative claims data to track low-value care for a population of interest.

Various research projects and concept papers have been conducted by the Consortium some of which include:

  • completed project involved tracking under-utilization of five high-value services and inappropriate use of five low-value services over time by a commercially-insured population as an indication of the extent to which spending is shifting from low-value to high-value care.
  • second project extended the above tracking of low-value care to 20 services and developed both national and state-level estimates of low-value use of these services.
  • A third project examining similarities and differences among states with a higher prevalence of low-value care compared to those with a lower prevalence of low-value care.
  •  A project to develop a low-value care reporting tool has produced a first version of the “Low-Value Care Visualizer” to aggregate and display the results of studies that measure the use of low-value care. Plans call for enhancing the tool in a subsequent effort.
  • An exploratory project is investigating the feasibility of developing a screening model for approximating overall waste for a specific population, including an indication of the types of services that contribute most to this waste.

Consortium staff is currently identifying additional quick-strike projects that will further advance the science of health care value assessment.