CMS Announces New Accountable Care Organizations in Massachusetts

Two out of the first 27 accountable care organizations (ACO’s) in CMS’ new Shared Savings Program reside in Massachusetts and will be online with its counterparts from across the country this month.

According to a press release by CMS, “The selected organizations have agreed to be responsible for improving care for nearly 375,000 beneficiaries in eighteen states through better coordination among providers.”

The CMS statement continues that all ACOs that succeed in providing high quality care may share in the savings to Medicare, as long as their performance reduces the cost of care and is sufficiently rated on 33 quality measures. The quality measures relate to, among other things, care coordination and patient safety, use of appropriate preventive health services, improved care for at-risk populations, and the patient experience of care.

The Massachusetts ACO’s include Jordan Community ACO and Physicians of Cape Cod AC. CMS provides summaries of each ACO and the Massachusetts initiatives are described here:

  • The Jordan Community ACO is a not-for-profit organization based in Plymouth, Massachusetts and founded in 2012. The Jordan Community ACO consists of more than 100 physicians from Plymouth Bay Medical Associates, Jordan Physician Associates, and a number of specialty physicians from Jordan Hospital. Together, the Jordan Community ACO physicians coordinate the healthcare of more than 6,000 Medicare beneficiaries in Plymouth and Barnstable Counties. This approach ensures that patients receive the right care from the right provider at the right time, making it possible to identify and address problems early, before hospital care becomes necessary.
  • Physicians of Cape Cod ACO has been coordinating care for beneficiaries through a managed care program for 10 years, and intends to bring the expertise developed in that program to the ACO model for fee-for-service beneficiaries. It is expected to serve approximately 5,000 beneficiaries living in Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

Five of the 27 ACO’s are also participating in the Advance Payment ACO program, although none of them are in Massachusetts. One project is located in northern New Hampshire and called the North Country ACO. These 27 ACO’s join the 32 “Pioneer ACO’s” that have 5 projects in Massachusetts.

CMS revealed they are reviewing 150 additional applications for the Medicare Shared Savings Program, of which more than 50 are aiming to be in the Advance Payment Model.

More information is available in CMS’ announcement.

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