INTRODUCTION There is only limited and conflicting evidence on the effectiveness of Pay-for-Performance (P4P) programmes, although they might have the potential to improve guideline adherence and quality of care. We therefore aim to test a P4P intervention in Swiss primary care practices focusing on quality indicators (QI) achievement in the treatment of patients with diabetes.
METHODS AND ANALYSIS This is a cluster-randomised, two-armed intervention study with the primary care practice as unit of randomisation. The control group will receive bimonthly feedback reports containing last data of blood pressure and glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c) measurements. The intervention group will additionally be informed about a financial incentive for each percentage point improved in QI achievement. Primary outcomes are differences in process (measurement of HbA1c) and clinical QI (blood pressure control) between the two groups. Furthermore, we investigate the effect on non-incentivised QIs and on sustainability of the financial incentives. Swiss primary care practices participating in the FIRE (Family Medicine ICPC Research using Electronic Medical Record) research network are eligible for participation. The FIRE database consists of anonymised structured medical routine data from Swiss primary care practices. According to power calculations, 70 of the general practitioners contributing to the database will be randomised in either of the groups.
ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION According to the Local Ethics Committee of the Canton of Zurich, the project does not fall under the scope of the law on human research and therefore no ethical consent is necessary. Results will be published in a peer-reviewed journal.