Why the controversy of ACOs

ACO’s are organizations that are supposed to bring physicians and hospitals together so they can share resources to cut costs and improve the quality of care. When an ACO can show that they’ve increased care and generated a savings, they receive a percentage of those savings.

The Health Care Reform law requires the adoption of ACOs, however many folks don’t think there’s a strong likelihood of them working correctly. The reason being is that historically, hospitals and docs have two very different business models. Hospitals are in the business of keeping patients in the hospital while doctors try to keep patients out of the hospital.

Another problem is that ACOs will most likely only be affordable and therefore available to large provider groups. You see, if you’re a large group you have a better chance of being able to purchase the expensive technology and infrastructure required. On the other hand, if you you’re a small mom-and-pop group then you’re most likely not going to have the funds to make the necessary investments. Unfortunately, ACOs will be driven by the big large groups at the expense of the small local health care providers and clinics.

Typically, when something of this magnitude occurs it results in less choices and services for the consumer, which in this case is unfortunately the patient.

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