What People are Saying: Promoting Coordinated Health Care
By Chris Stenrud, HHS Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs
Yesterday, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced final rules for a new program designed to encourage primary care doctors, specialists, hospitals, and other health care providers to coordinate their care. Created by the Affordable Care Act, these rules on Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) add to the menu of options for providers looking to better coordinate care for patients and will make it easier for providers to deliver high quality care and use health care dollars more wisely.
These rules followed months of comment and soliciting feedback from stakeholders across the health care industry. Here’s what people are saying about the new rules:
AARP: "The programs announced today can benefit people in Medicare by encouraging providers to work together to better coordinate patient care"
American Medical Association: "We are pleased that the final rule on Medicare Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) includes many of the important changes recommended by the AMA to allow all interested physicians to lead and participate in these new models of care."
American Hospital Association: "We believe today’s menu of ACO options allows America’s hospitals to create new models of accountable care organizations on which the transformation of health care delivery is so dependent."
Association of American Medical Colleges: "Medical schools and teaching hospitals— institutions that often treat the sickest and most vulnerable patients—have a better opportunity to participate in the ACO initiative."
American Medical Group Association: “CMS has listened to what other people said and proposed a different approach…I’m hoping lots of ACOs form because of the potential this model has for transforming our health system for the better.”
National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems: "By listening and responding to provider concerns, the administration has taken positive steps toward developing a program that will provide more integrated care to patients in a framework feasible for providers... These changes will allow hospitals and other providers to more easily participate in the program, and should add to the success of this initiative and future innovations in health care delivery system reform."
Campaign For Better Care: “As advocates for consumers, particularly for our oldest and sickest patients who urgently need better-coordinated care, we applaud this effort to incentivize better primary care, increase coordination, and share accountability across providers. We are very pleased that this final rule will require ACOs to adhere to strong patient-centered criteria, use beneficiary experience of care measures to evaluate performance, and ensure full transparency, notification and choice for beneficiaries.”