While We Wait for CMS Guidance on ACO’s

Medicare “Accountable Care Organizations” | Shared Savings Program | New Section 1899 of Title XVIII | Preliminary Questions & Answers The Affordable Care Act (ACA) improves the health care delivery system through incentives to enhance quality, improve beneficiary outcomes and increase value of care.  One of these key delivery system reforms is the encouragement of Accountable Care …

Accountable Care Organizations, Explained

by Jenny Gold As the House begins debate today on an effort to repeal the health care law, we took a closer look at one of the provisions of the law that health care providers are talking about the most — accountable care organizations. ACOs take up only seven pages of the massive new health …

Chasing Unicorns: The Future of ACOs

By Ian Morrison The accountable care organization is like a unicorn, a fantastic creature that is vested with mythical powers. But no one has actually seen one. I have re-blogged and re-tweeted (twitter@seccurve) this so often that I received all the credit for the line. Welcome to the Internet age. But in all fairness to …

How to Finance and Build Your ACO

David A. Lips, for HealthLeaders Media Section 3022 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is has the innocuous name, “Medicare Shared Savings Program.” Accountable care organizations are at the heart of this program, which is intended to coordinate healthcare providers serving patient populations of at least 5,000. Unlike many other parts of PPACA, …

ACO 101: A Physician Primer with Mark Browne, MD

On the Wednesday, December 29th 2010 program ACO 101: A Physician Primer at 11AM Pacific and 2PM Eastern, my guest commentator and co-host is consultant, health innovation thought leader, and blogger, Mark Browne, MD of Pershing Yoakley & Associates, aka @consultdoc on Twitter. While on the front end of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid …

ACO 101: ‘A Physician Primer’

Next week we take some time to get down to fundamentals for physicians on Accountable Care Organizations (ACO’s). Specifically we’ll address: What are they? Absent regulatory guidance, we have primarily a 30 thousand foot view with some pilot and demonstration exceptions. What are the known or proximal models to date? How are they structured? How …

ACO Watch: A Mid Week Review

On the Wednesday, December 22nd 2010 program at 11AM Pacific and 2PM Eastern, thought leader, blogger, lecturer and consultant Kent Bottles, MD, returns for an encore conversation.  We’ll highlight key points in several of the recent reports issued, here, here and here, by the Center for American Progress, the California Healthcare Foundation, and Health Affairs, respectively …

A Model For Integrating Independent Physicians Into Accountable Care Organizations

Mark C. Shields, Pankaj H. Patel, Martin Manning and Lee Sacks in Health Affairs Abstract The Affordable Care Act encourages the formation of accountable care organizations as a new part of Medicare. Pending forthcoming federal regulations, though, it is unclear precisely how these ACOs will be structured. Although large integrated care systems that directly employ …

Sneak Peak at Upcoming ACO Risk Sharing, Quality Measure and Beneficiary Assignment Regulations?

Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) Chairman, Glen Hackbarth, recently submitted comments in response to the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Request for Information regarding the much-anticipated Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) Accountable Care Organization (ACO) regulations, to be published early next year.  MedPAC’s comments were outlined in a letter dated November 22, 2010, from Mr. Hackbarth …

Health Industry Stakeholders to CMS on ACO’s: Published Comment Letters

In response to the request for comment proferred by CMS on November 17th, 2010 ‘Medicare Program; Request for Information Regarding Accountable Care Organizations and the Medicare Shared Saving Program’ the industry has spoken. Below are select links to the respective submitting entities, and the issues they have called to the attention of CMS Chief, Donald Berwick, MD: Charles …