Accountable Care Organizations Using Preventive Medicine and Accuracy to Improve Clinical Outcomes
It’s no secret that as more and more baby-boomers enter into retirement and onto the rolls of Medicare and Social Security, the drain on these systems is becoming a concern to those who administer them as well as to those who depend upon them. Moreover, this abundance of aging citizens will create a greater demand than ever before for medical services, while the number of doctors to provide these services dwindles.
With fewer medical resources to go around it stands to reason that there is no room for waste. They must all be used with the utmost efficiency.
This is the objective of the new Accountable Care Organizations (or ACOs). Until recently, physicians and other practitioners have been paid per-procedure. Under this pay structure, many providers tended to over-treat. The more tests they ordered, the more procedures they performed and the more times they got a patient to return to the office; the more they got paid. With an ACO, the emphasis is on thorough and accurate preventive medicine.
Since there is an ever-growing shortage of physicians, ACO practices are rethinking traditional practice structuring and allowing nurses, care managers and other medical professionals to help carry the load. Since ACOs are set up by providers rather than insurance companies, they are nothing like the HMO’s of the past. Patients are not restricted to specific doctors in a plan, but rather can see any physician as long as they fulfill the provisions of their contract with the insurer.
It is encouraging to know that there have been significant improvements reported overall, with improved clinical outcomes, reduced costs, lower re-admission rates and better coordinated care heading the list.
To learn more about the impact Accountable Care Organizations will make on your practice, read our entire article at: http://www.experics.com/?white-papers=accountable-care-organizations-are-one-of-the-latest-new-healthcare-trends