Health Policy

Health Economics & Financing

Abt helps private-sector and government clients examine the economic consequences of healthcare programs and policies. Our economists design, conduct, and evaluate programs pertaining to healthcare product pricing, health system financing, and provider payment systems. 

For private sector clients, Abt has projected the implications of alternative programs for financing long-term care in the United States. We have also developed models to forecast the need for certain healthcare professionals over time.
Our projects for federal and state government clients have included:
  • Leading the design and evaluation of new incentive payment systems, including reforming the way Medicare hospice providers are reimbursed;
  • Examining the potential for using market forces to set prices for health maintenance organizations, durable medical equipment manufacturers, and laboratories; and
  • Designing and implementing payment systems for inpatient and outpatient hospitals, home health agencies, and nursing facilities.



UNITED STATES: Does paying for entire episodes of care improve outcomes?


Some Medicare and Medicaid payments are made based on individual episodes of care such as inpatient, outpatient and home health. Concerned that this approach may result in fragmented care and minimal coordination across providers, CMS piloted an innovative new “bundled” payment model in January 2013 with a select number of hospitals and post-acute care providers. Using mixed methods and multiple data sources, Abt Associates and Abt SRBI are assessing the impact of bundled payments on quality of care and Medicare expenditures—gauging patient satisfaction, access to services, functionality factors, recovery results, and implications for the market overall. Those findings could ultimately lead to more coordinated and higher quality care at a lower overall cost to Medicare.
CLIENT: The Lewin Group/CMS / PROJECT: Evaluation of the Bundled Payment for Care Improvement (BPCI)