The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced the approval of an additional 106 accountable care organizations (ACOs) through the Medicare Shared Savings Program. These newly approved ACOs bring the total number of ACOs approved by CMS to over 250 organizations. In total, Medicare’s ACO partners will serve more than 4 million beneficiaries nationwide. Federal savings from this initiative could be up to $940 million over four years.
The new ACOs include a diverse cross-section of physician practices across the country. Roughly half of all ACOs are physician-led organizations that serve fewer than 10,000 beneficiaries. Approximately 20 percent of ACOs include community health centers, rural health centers and critical access hospitals that serve low-income and rural communities.
The newly approved ACOs include several operating in multiple states, as well as several ACOs who received separate approvals in multiple health care markets. For example, Universal American Corporation’s Collaborative Health Systems will be operating fifteen ACOs in New Mexico, Texas, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia.
The group announced today also includes 15 additional Advance Payment Model ACOs, physician-based or rural providers who would need greater access to capital to invest in staff, electronic health record systems, or other infrastructure required to improve care coordination. Medicare will recoup advance payments over time through future shared savings.