Even though it only takes up a few pages in the health care reform law, Accountable Care Organizations (ACO) have been one of the most talked about provisions — especially for senior living and care providers.
ACOs are intended to reduce the cost of health care by creating better coordination throughout the individual’s health system. According to the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, “Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) are groups of doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers, who come together voluntarily to give coordinated high quality care to the Medicare patients they serve. Coordinated care helps ensure that patients, especially the chronically ill, get the right care at the right time, with the goal of avoiding unnecessary duplication of services and preventing medical errors.”
While assisted living and residential care providers are not going to be the central player, we can be an important partner in an ACO to create better coordinated care for our residents. Additionally, being part of an ACO could create a source for new resident leads.
As you know, health care reform is evolving and implementation will take time. Here are a few links where you can learn more: