The Role of Regional Anaesthesia and Acute Pain Services in Value-Based Healthcare

Turk J Anaesthesiol Reanim. 2023 Dec 27;51(6):450-458. doi: 10.4274/TJAR.2023.231478.


Value-based healthcare prioritizes patient outcomes and quality relative to costs, shifting focus from service volume to delivered value. This review explores the significant role of regional anaesthesia (RA) and acute pain services (APS) within the evolving value-based healthcare (VBHC) framework. At the heart of VBHC is the goal to enhance patient outcomes while simultaneously optimizing operational efficiency and reducing costs. The review underscores the need for VBHC and illustrates how integrating RA/APS with Enhanced Recovery Protocols can lead to improved outcomes, aligning directly with the goals of the Triple Aim. Several clinical studies show that RA improves patient outcomes, enhances operating room efficiency, and reduces costs. This is complemented by a discussion on the integration of RA and APS into the VBHC model, highlighting emerging value-based payment structures and strategies for their successful implementation. By merging specialized RA/APS protocols with standardized clinical practices, significant improvements in operating room efficiency and associated economic benefits are observed. Across the healthcare spectrum, from providers to payers, this synergy results in enhanced operational efficiency and communication, raising the standard of patient care. Additionally, the potential of RA and APS to address the opioid crisis, through alternative pain management methods, is emphasized. Globally, the shift towards VBHC requires international collaboration, sharing of best practices, and efficient resource allocation, with RA and APS playing a crucial role. In conclusion, as healthcare moves toward a value-driven model, RA and APS become increasingly essential, signaling a future of refined, patient-centered care.

Keywords: Acute pain service; operating room efficiency; opioid epidemic; perioperative outcomes; perioperative pain management; regional anaesthesia; value-based health care.