• Article

Primary Care Clinicians' Perspectives on Reducing Low-Value Care in an Integrated Delivery System

CONTEXT: Perceptions about low-value care (eg, medical tests and procedures that may be unnecessary and/or harmful) among clinicians with capitated salaries are unknown. OBJECTIVE: Explore clinicians' perceived use of and responsibility for reducing low-value care by focusing on barriers to use, awareness of the Choosing Wisely campaign, and response to reports of peer-comparison resource use and practice patterns. METHODS: Electronic, cross-sectional survey, distributed in 2013, to 304 salaried primary care physicians and physician assistants at Group Health Cooperative. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Attitudes, awareness, and barriers of low-value care strategies and initiatives. RESULTS: A total of 189 clinicians responded (62% response rate). More than 90% believe cost is important to various stakeholders and believe it is fair to ask clinicians to be cost-conscious. Most found peer-comparison resource-use reports useful for understanding practice patterns and prompting peer discussions. Two-thirds of clinicians were aware of the Choosing Wisely campaign; among them, 97% considered it a legitimate information source. Although 88% reported being comfortable discussing low-value care with patients, 80% reported they would order tests or procedures when a patient insisted. As key barriers in reducing low-value care, clinicians identified time constraints (45%), overcoming patient preferences/values (44%), community standards (43%), fear of patients' dissatisfaction (41%), patients' knowledge about the harms of low-value care (38%), and availability of tools to support shared decision making (37%). CONCLUSIONS: Salaried clinicians are aware of rising health care costs and want to be stewards of limited health care resources. Evidence-based initiatives such as the Choosing Wisely campaign may help motivate clinicians to be conscientious stewards of limited health care resources


Buist, D. S., Chang, E., Handley, M., Pardee, R., Gundersen, G., Cheadle, A., & Reid, R. J. (2015). Primary Care Clinicians' Perspectives on Reducing Low-Value Care in an Integrated Delivery System. Permanente Journal, Advance Online Publication. DOI: 10.7812/TPP/15-086