Value@WORK: Value-Driven Care for Labor and Health

Our health care is increasingly moving beyond the hospital walls. To answer new demands for care, new ways of collaboration are needed between all healthcare professionals involved and the patient. In the Netherlands, there is growing attention for Value-Based Health Care (VBHC), a concept of quality of care with an emphasis on using patient experiences for learning and improvement. Industrial Design Engineering, TU Delft and Amsterdam UMC work together on these care issues within the domain of Work and Health in the Value@WORK project.

The definition and application of VBHC can differ per specific healthcare context. Currently, the elaboration of VBHC within the Dutch healthcare is mainly focused on clinical outcomes. There are several positive examples of hospitals using outcomes to improve the quality of care. The use of VBHC outside of the hospital walls has so far been investigated to a limited extent. The application of VBHC within occupational and insurance medicine is still a new field.

The purpose of the Value@WORK project is to determine value within insurance medicine by (1) translating the VBHC concept into insurance medicine practice, (2) defining a minimum set of value-focused outcome indicators, and (3) establishing and investigating a care network in which insurance physicians participate.

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Central research questions are:

  1. What can VBHC mean for insurance medicine?
  2. What are VBHC outcome indicators for insurance medicine?
  3. How can a care network in which insurance physicians participate contribute to valuable care?

The set of outcome indicators to be developed is intended for use in the insurance physician's daily practice. The Value-Driven approach helps to know and improve; to know what clients really think is important and what quality in insurance medicine practice means to them. The outcome indicators chosen are not only important for the client and the insurance doctor, but also for other stakeholders who contribute to restoration of functioning and sustainable employability, such as occupational health experts and care professionals involved. In the consultation room, the client and the insurance doctor can together use the insights into client values to enter into a conversation about wishes, possible goals and expectations regarding work participation and income security. 

In addition, work is being done on the design of a care network of which the insurance doctor is a part. The client with work limitations due to cardiovascular disease will thus be better informed, treated, supervised and assessed in the entire process of clinical and social recovery. Through more and better cooperation between the insurance doctor, the company doctor, healthcare professionals and (social) organizations, value can be added for the client.

Porter, M. E., & Lee, T. H. (2013). The strategy that will fix health care. Harvard Business Review, 91(12), 24-24.

Complete Value@WORK research team:

Marije Hagendijk MSc, Dr. Nina Zipfel, Prof. dr. Sylvia van der Burg-Vermeulen, Prof. dr. Philip van der Wees, Dr. Jan Hoving, Dr. ir. Marijke Melles, Dr. Ersen Colkesen, Prof. dr. Carel Hulshof.