Last month, CMS unveiled details of its new Next Generation ACO (account care organization) program, along with the 21 participating ACOs. Here are three of the biggest takeaways from the announcement from CMS:
- Care coordination remains a focus.
“Building up on experience from the Pioneer ACO Model and Medicare Shared Savings Program, the Next Generation ACO Model offers a new opportunity in accountable care — one that sets predictable financial targets, enables providers and beneficiaries greater opportunities to coordinate care, and aims to attain the highest quality standards of care.”
- With greater risk comes greater reward.
“The Next Generation model participants will have the opportunity to take on higher levels of financial risk — up to 100 percent risk — than ACOs in current initiatives. While they are at greater financial risk, they also have a greater opportunity to share in more of the model’s savings through better care coordination and care management.”
- Telehealth services are becoming increasingly important.
“The new model offers a new opportunity in accountable care — one that enables providers and beneficiaries greater opportunities to coordinate care and aims to attain the highest quality standards of care. Unlike other models, this model includes a prospectively (rather than retrospectively) set benchmark, allows beneficiaries to choose to be aligned to the ACO, and tests beneficiary incentives for seeking care at Next Generation providers, including increased availability of telehealth and care coordination services.”