For many people today, the Cold War seems like a distant historical memory. But Mary Tolan, CEO of Accretive Heatlh, says improving quality and controlling healthcare costs are the current generation’s cold war.

In a recent video conversation with the Wall Street Journal’s Dennis Berman, Accretive Health CEO Mary Tolan discusses the future of the American healthcare system and the obstacles many hospitals and physicians face in juggling the importance of providing quality care and the ever-rising costs associated with its delivery.

Ms. Tolan was in Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2013.

In the interview, Mr. Berman asks Ms. Tolan why she thinks 2013 is different from decade’s past on the question of controlling healthcare costs. According to Tolan, “The promising thing that’s really happening right now, Dennis, is that incentives are shifting. And for the first time we’re really giving providers accountability and incentives for managing patient care in its entirety….And once we change incentives we have the beginning of new possibilities.”

When asked by Berman about the practical implications of these kinds of new incentives, and whether they run counter to doctors’ personal financial interests, Tolan said,  ”This is the kind of change that could be very good for physicians too….In the new world, with the new types of accountable care and with value-based incentives, [physicians] are going to really have the time to spend with the sickest patients, and that’s going to change everything. And if [physicians] can succeed at that [they] don’t have to be the kind of person who sees their reimbursements going down.”

Click below to watch the full interview.



About Accretive Health

Founded in 2003, Accretive Health’s mission is to help healthcare providers strengthen their financial stability and deliver higher quality, more accessible care to its clients’ patients and the communities they serve.  The majority of the hospitals that Accretive Health serves are non-profit, faith-based hospitals or teaching hospitals, deeply rooted in values of stewardship, generosity of spirit, leadership and dedication to their communities.

With approximately 2,900 employees, Accretive Health serves many of the top-rated hospital systems in the country and is committed to providing solutions that assist them in the delivery of quality healthcare services and maintaining financial stability.

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