A majority of human resource executives at U.S. hospitals and health care systems expect health care reform to hasten the transformation of the industry’s traditional business model, according to a new survey by Towers Watson. The survey also found that workforce issues, including shortages of primary care physicians, the need for a wider array of staff skills and new leadership models, will rise in importance as the industry grapples with this transformation.

The survey found that a majority of respondents anticipate significant changes in their operations when the new legislation is fully implemented. For example, fully 93% expect cuts in reimbursement levels, and 67% anticipate a shift in the payer mix, with fewer private payers. Just over three-quarters (77%) agree they will need a wider range of skills among their staff. And three-quarters expect a higher ratio of outpatient to inpatient care, as well as an increased need for primary care capabilities.

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