Michael Porter of Harvard Business School argues that the only way to make healthcare system function in a sustainable way is to focus on improving value. Demand for care is increasing, he says, yet capacity and resources are not. Unless Americans wish to ration services or cut back on physician payments, he argues, we need to find ways to get more out of the resources that we have. Value, says Porter, is the measure of patient health outcomes achieved relative to cost. We cannot make incremental improvements to the current system, he says. Instead, we need to restructure the incentives so that organizations begin competing on value.

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