Drawing upon role theory and the literature concerning unintended consequences of financial pressure, this study investigates the effects of health care decision pressure from the hospital's administration and from the professional peer group on physician's inclination to engage in up coding. We explore two kinds of up coding, information-related and action-related, and develop hypothesis that connect these kinds of data manipulation to the sources of pressure via the intermediate effect of role conflict. Qualitative data from initial interviews with physicians and subsequent questionnaire evidence from 578 physicians in 14 French hospitals suggest that the source of pressure is a relevant predictor of physicians' inclination to engage in data-manipulation. We further find that this effect is partly explained by the extent to which these pressures create role conflict. Given the concern about up coding in treatment-based reimbursement systems worldwide, our analysis adds to understanding how the design of the hospital's management control system may enhance this undesired type of behavior.

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doi.org/10.1016/j.healthpol.2013.02.003, hdl.handle.net/1765/89286
ERIM Top-Core Articles
Health Policy
Erasmus Research Institute of Management

Georgescu, I, & Hartmann, F.G.H. (2013). Sources of financial pressure and up coding behavior in French public hospitals. Health Policy, 110(2-3), 156–163. doi:10.1016/j.healthpol.2013.02.003