ACOs, like other such pro­grams, may prove to be short-lived

Modern Healthcare - - COMMENT -

Re­gard­ing the re­cent ar­ti­cle “More Medi­care Pi­o­neer ACOs head for the hills” (Mod­ern Health­care, Sept. 29, p. 10), no doubt the ACO trend is cy­cling, sim­i­lar to in­te­grated de­liv­ery sys­tems, physi­cian-hos­pi­tal or­ga­ni­za­tions and other strate­gies that health sys­tems have used to grow their mar­kets when re­spond­ing to gov­ern­ment and pri­vate pay­ers’ at­tempts to rein in costs. In forc­ing providers to look at qual­ity and costs, the re­sult is in­creased com­pe­ti­tion for mar­ket share, which stim­u­lates in­dus­try growth. While spend­ing in­creases, unit prices de­cline and care im­proves. This is a good thing.

Con­rad Ver­non Heart & Vas­cu­lar Con­sul­tants Bur­net, Texas

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