Thought Leaders’ Corner: What Is the Greatest Challenge Facing the ACO Movement in 2015?

Accountable Care News January 2015

Doug Hastings, Chair Emeritus of the Firm, based in the firm’s Washington, DC, office, authored a thought leadership article discussing the challenges accountable care organizations will face in 2015.

The following appeared in Accountable Care News:

Q. What is the greatest challenge facing the ACO movement in 2015?

Doug Hastings wrote:

Accelerating the development and implementation of financial models that incorporate shared risk between payers and providers, while achieving quality goals. Pay-for-performance and shared savings only models will not drive the necessary health system transformation in the long run.

Certainly, we will need to continue to encourage start-up and early stage ACOs. But arrangements with existing ACOs, particularly in markets where capitation is not commonly found, need to move forward along the risk continuum. The new Proposed Rule for the Medicare Shared Savings Program, with its introduction of an additional two-sided shared savings and loss model (Track3) is an effort in this direction by CMS. Private payers and providers should be more aggressive in 2015 in developing their own more advanced shared risk arrangements, which must be fair to both sides to work.