Publication: Designing and Implementing Health Care Provider Payment Systems : How-To Manuals

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Langenbrunner, John C.
Cashin, Cheryl
O’Dougherty, Sheila
This volume grows out of an initiative in the World Bank on resource allocation and purchasing ('RAP'), which started in 2000, and continues to publish articles and books related to strategic purchasing. The initiative emerged from such questions in developing economies as: why do individuals need help in purchasing health services from providers? Is the 'middleman' really necessary? Can people not just buy health services in the same way they would go to the local market to buy bread, milk, or fruit, especially since, throughout most of history that is what most people did? When sick, they contacted local healers directly. Public policy historically was limited largely to protecting the sick against charlatans and was enforced through ethical codes such as the Hippocratic Oath. There was no expensive technology, and most serious conditions led to death. Loss of employment and burial costs were the most expensive parts of illness. With industrialization and the scientific revolution, all this changed. As understanding about the causes, prevention, and treatment of illness expanded, interventions become more complex and expensive. Health care was no longer the exclusive domain of traditional healers. Partly because of the complexities involved, the World Bank's new health, nutrition, and population strategy has noted that 'countries increasingly not only want to know what to do (with health systems) but also how to do it, particularly how to design and manage the transition from current to reformed systems.' This volume is a step in that direction, to help countries design, manage, and implement reforms related to strategic purchasing with an emphasis on changing their provider payment systems.
Langenbrunner, John C.; Cashin, Cheryl; O’Dougherty, Sheila. 2009. Designing and Implementing Health Care Provider Payment Systems : How-To Manuals. © Washington, DC: World Bank. License: CC BY 3.0 IGO.
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