The Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act Essay

1194 Words Jul 12th, 2015 5 Pages
Accountable Care Organization (ACO) became a term in healthcare alongside the release of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in 2009. Although, the initial set of guidelines, established by the US Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) in 2011 were designed for the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP). ACOs have had proven success within the Medicare population, and have been formatted now to include Medicaid patients. According to Mulhestein (2015), Medicaid ACOs have grown significantly over the past year, and 16 states have now passed ACO legislation or have enacted ACO-like pilot programs. While ACOs exist in all fifty states, plus Washington D.C., and Puerto Rico, and the number of organizations correlate with the population, not all of these states have chosen to expand Medicaid. By virtue of the beneficiary population mix of Medicaid, under Medicaid expansion in many states, ACOs have become the model used to reach cost efficiency and quality of service standards. Mulhestein (2015) states that market penetration is highest in markets where there are multiple providers participating in ACOs, such as in Oregon, which has moved its Medicaid population into accountable care programs. An ACO creates an accountable care system in healthcare, to provide: better care for individuals, improved health of populations, and reduce expenditures of Medicare and Medicaid. While the current scope seems very narrow, the hope is to make this change fundamental…

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