New Affordable Care Act Tools and Payment Models Deliver $372 Million in Savings, Improve Care

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Medicare Shared Savings Program ACOs and Pioneer ACO Model show continued quality of care improvements and additional Medicare savings

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The Oakwood ACO is proud of its physician and health system partners who worked collaboratively to improve quality and care outcomes for our Medicare beneficiaries while lowering the overall cost.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued quality and financial performance results showing that Medicare Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) have improved patient care and produced hundreds of millions of dollars in savings for the program.

In addition to providing more Americans with access to quality, affordable health care, the Affordable Care Act encourages doctors, hospitals and other health care providers to work together to better coordinate care and keep people healthy rather than treat them when they are sick, which also helps to reduce health care costs. ACOs are one example of the innovative ways to improve care and reduce costs. In an ACO, providers who join these groups become eligible to share savings with Medicare when they deliver that care more efficiently.

ACOs in the Medicare Shared Savings Program (Shared Savings Program) and Pioneer ACO Model generated over $372 million in total program savings for Medicare ACOs. The encouraging news comes from preliminary quality and financial results from the second year of performance for 23 Pioneer ACOs, and final results from the first year of performance for 220 Shared Savings Program ACOs.

Meanwhile, the ACOs outperformed published benchmarks for quality and patient experience last year and improved significantly on almost all measures of quality and patient experience this year. (Please see the accompanying fact sheet for additional details.)

“We all have a stake in improving the quality of care we receive, while spending our dollars more wisely,” Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell said. “It’s good for businesses, for our middle class, and for our country's global competitiveness. That’s why at HHS we are committed to partnering across sectors to make progress.”

The Oakwood ACO is one of the ACOs that is eligible to share in savings.

“The Oakwood ACO is proud of its physician and health system partners who worked collaboratively to improve quality and care outcomes for our Medicare beneficiaries while lowering the overall cost. Our performance in this shared savings program clearly demonstrates that physicians and hospitals can be successful in working together to enhance the value of care we provide to our patients,” said William Isenstein, Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer, Oakwood ACO.

“The partnership between physicians and hospitals allows us to achieve so much more together,” said Belal Abdallah, MD, chair, Oakwood ACO. “We look forward to our continued participation in the Medicare Shared Savings Program and improving on our performance as we invest in additional tools and implement new protocols to increase quality and efficiency.”

Since passage of the Affordable Care Act, more than 360 Medicare ACOs have been established in 47 states, serving over 5.6 million Americans with Medicare. Medicare ACOs are groups of providers and suppliers of services that work together to coordinate care for the Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) beneficiaries they serve and achieve program goals.

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Paula Rivera-Kerr

Howard Hughey