<<<<<<<<<<<< PRESS RELEASE Primary Care Alliance SEP 4, 2015 >>>>>>>>>>>>
Medicare ACOs Continue to Improve Quality of Care, Generate Shared Savings
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services today issued 2014 quality and financial performance results showing that more Medicare Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) continue to generate financial savings while improving the quality of care for Medicare beneficiaries by fostering greater collaboration between doctors, hospitals, and health care providers.
When an ACO demonstrates that it has achieved high-quality care and effectively reducing spending of health care dollars above certain thresholds, it is able to share in the savings generated for Medicare. In 2014, 20 Pioneer and 333 Shared Savings Program ACOs generated more than $411 million in savings, which includes all ACOs savings and losses. The results also show that ACOs with more experience in the program tend to perform better over time.
Medicare ACOs are groups of doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers, who come together voluntarily to provide coordinated high quality care to their Medicare patients. The goal of coordinated care is to ensure that patients, especially the chronically ill, get the right care at the right time, while avoiding unnecessary duplication of services and preventing medical errors.
When an ACO exceeds quality and financial thresholds – demonstrating achievement of high-quality care and wiser spending of health care dollars – it is able to share in the savings generated for Medicare.
This is the first year that Primary Care Alliance, a local ACO achieved savings. “We are proud of our role in helping CMS achieve the goal of increasing access to care, improving quality and lower costs.We believe that care is about the individual and we are committed to helping our patients achieve their best health. When physicians work together we can achieve all these things.” Says Dr. Shahbaz Cheema Board Member, Primary Care Alliance.
“As a physician one of the most rewarding things was creating the ACO and giving other physicians the opportunity to join at no cost or risk to themselves. Now that we have achieved surplus we will give it back to the physicians in the ACO because they did the work. I have always believed this is how physicians should work with each other" Says Dr. Khai Chang, Founder of Lakeview Internal Medicine which makes up the majority of physicians in the Primary Care Alliance ACO.