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Better Physician Incentives Through Behavioral Economics

healthcare hospital patient doctor

Loss aversion, choice overload, relative social ranking—these are among the behavioral economics concepts that experts say are as important as financial incentives in influencing physicians’ practice patterns and performance. For their Commonwealth Fund–supported study in the Annals of Internal Medicine, the University of Pennsylvania’s Ezekiel Emanuel, M.D., and colleagues examined how this field is informing new incentives that encourage doctors to follow evidence-based guidelines and deliver better-coordinated care to patients.

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