HHS Issues ACO Rules

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sibelius issued proposed rules to regulate the Medicare accountable care organizations (ACOs) created by the health system reform law. Issues addressed by the rules include shared savings, quality improvement, and antitrust.

"An ACO will be rewarded for providing better care and investing in the health and lives of patients," said Donald M. Berwick, MD, administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. "ACOs are not just a new way to pay for care but a new model for the organization and delivery of care."

TMA physician leaders and staff experts are reviewing the 429-page document and have many concerns. TMA will complete the analysis shortly and release that along with reports from other medical organizations to provide guidance to physicians who are contemplating joining or creating an ACO.

For more information on ACOs and what they mean to you, read "ACO Frenzy" in the December 2010 issue of Texas Medicine.

Action, April 15, 2011