value-based health care
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The Shift to Value-Based Health Care: What Medical Sales Reps Need to Know

The healthcare industry is always changing. As it evolves, so do provider reimbursement models. Traditionally, American healthcare providers have been reimbursed on a fee-for-service basis. However, as regulations change over the years, there has been a steady shift to value-based health care.

A 2019 report by AJMC stated, “The prioritization of alternative payment models (APMs) or value-based care (VBC) has risen in the past half-decade, with 34% of healthcare dollars spent in 2017, up from 23% in 2015, being attributed to these variables.”

Now more than ever, as healthcare organizations look toward a post-pandemic future, there seems to be an accelerated shift to value-based health care due to the impact of COVID-19.

So, what is value-based health care?

It’s a type of payment model that rewards providers for delivering high-quality care at lower costs. The goals of value-based health care are to increase quality, decrease cost, and turn healthcare into a competitive market.

And, why is this important to medical sales reps?

Understanding the different forms of reimbursement and their advantages can help medical sales reps better adjust their strategies to accommodate the industry shifting to the value-based models.

Check out how switching from fee-for-free service to value-based — or even performance-based — reimbursement for providers will impact the medical sales industry:

Redefining quality

According to the Medical Device + Diagnostic Industry (MD+DI) article ‘The Rise of Value-Based Healthcare Means a New Sales Pitch’:

“No longer is the healthcare industry focused on simply a fee for a service, but now on delivering outcomes. Healthcare providers are now being paid by helping people stay healthy and preventing the need for more expensive treatments—a proactive approach instead of a reactive one. Healthcare providers are even being reimbursed for offering this kind of care, meaning that they get paid on this ability to prevent more expensive treatments.”

How will this impact sales reps?

Your pitch and how you measure success will change. Product pitches should now be about preventive measures for patients, rather than on how well it will sell. Similarly, success should be measured with value-based metrics, rather than just volumes of sales.


A recent Spotio article reported that, currently, physicians and hospitals take on all the risks when deciding to buy medical devices. However, the Office of the Inspectors are revising the rules regulating medical device sales. One of the suggested changes? Establishing standards that would share the risks and benefits of medical device purchases.

How will this impact sales reps?

According to the same Spotio article, value-based pricing would encourage additional training and support.

Also, value-based warranties would offer peace of mind to both healthcare providers and hospitals. If the product didn’t perform as expected, they’d receive a supplemental or alternative service. With this shift, reps would need to update sales agreements to include baseline and progress metrics.


Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, consumers and patients are demanding more at-home services than ever before. As a result, companies will be forced to compete and create more options that cater to at-home care.

How will this impact sales reps?

Soon, there will be new devices to sell to this new market. And to make them more user-friendly, these new devices will include training and monitoring software. As a result, there will be fewer onboarding requirements with patients — a big selling point for providers.


With an increase in competition, healthcare providers will be forced to be more transparent with patients. This offers an opportunity to reach and engage with clients in a new way.

How will this impact sales reps?

The new packaging should support healthcare providers as they foster an environment of communication and clarity. HCP onboarding and patient onboarding should be included and made easy. Also, focus on collaboration and transparency within the company to make sure that product feedback gets back to the innovators.

How do you think the shift from fee-for-service to value-based health care will impact the industry?