The recent opinion article in the NY Times by Alfie Kohn identifies research on the effectiveness of rewards that tell us we can’t bribe others into doing what we want. Rewards can change people’s behavior temporarily. They can never create a lasting commitment to an action or a value, and often they have exactly the opposite effect.
Within the healthcare policy field payment reforms have been trying to use rewards or punishment as the model to reduce costs. The terms Accountable Care Organization (ACO), Pay for Performance (P4P) and Value Based Purchasing (VBP) are the latest alphabet soup models.