by Gregg A. Masters, MPH
First there was section 30222 prescribed by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“ACA”), which added section 1899 to the Social Security Act that requires the Secretary of Health and Human Services to establish the [Medicare] Shared Savings Program (MSSP), see: ‘Summary of Final Rule Provisions for Accountable CareOrganizations under the Medicare Shared Savings Program‘.
Leading up to and continuing to this day is a literal potpourri of aligned industry stakeholders and interests who support this emerging ‘new, new thing‘. From the ACO Congress to the ACO Summit and a host of others including the National Association of Accountable Care Organizations (NAACOs) and most recently the ACO Coalition forged by principals at The American Journal of Managed Care (who launched a sister publication the American Journal of Accountable Care) they advocate for and provide both networking opportunities and continuing education into best practices for these nascent entities on which much of the success of the ACA is vested.
ACOs, a once ‘DOA’ (dead on arrival) too little too late or ‘HMO-lite’ model version, seems to be working it’s way into not only the lexicon of managed competition via a growing body of endorsements and reported outcomes data by many both in the public (CMS) and private (Aetna, United, Blues plans, etc) sectors as the preferred mechanism to implement the vision of the triple aim and fuel the transition from volume to value based medicine.
Like much of its era-specific innovation industry predecessors HMOs, PPOs, EPOs, OWAs), i.e., greasing the skids for if not enabling the HMO industry migration beyond the limited appeal of staff models to mainstream medicine penetration via Independent Practice Associations (IPAs), and later followed by the growth and penetration of PHOs (physician hospital organizations), ACO ‘enablers’ (as well as this value based platform) seem to be here to stay.
Enter the Florida Association of Accountable Care Organizations (“FLACCOs”) led by former health plan executive Nicole Bradberry (for context listen to interviews with Nicole here and here), which holds its annual conference in Orlando, Florida October 1 & 2nd 2015.
The agenda is packed with entrepreneurs and operators in the space from ACO enablement companies including Aledade, to ACOs and vendors who support their risk readiness assessments if not assumption such as RowdMap. Aledade founder and CEO Farzad Mostashari, MD will keynote (see: ‘Former ONC Director Farzad Mostashari, MD Launches @AledadeACO‘).
If you are not following FLAACOs and are interested in the road to accountable care, you may want to take note and perhaps even consider attending this gathering.