An Accountable Care Organization (ACO) is a formal group of physicians, hospitals, and other care providers that voluntarily work together to deliver high-quality coordinated care to Medicare beneficiaries. The goal of an ACO is to provide affordable care through reducing or eliminating unnecessary duplication of tests or services, lowering the risk of medical errors.
Of the 369 reporting MSSP ACOs only 136 (or 36 percent) generated shared savings. This is up from 2016, when approximately 31 percent of all participants generated shared savings. Some experts believe that the key to success for physician-only ACOs is their adaptability in partnerships with other care providers. Because hospital-only or mixed ACOs likely have established relationships with other care facilities, it’s more difficult to redefine expectations and quality control measures. Despite the challenges faced by all types of ACOs, they continue to succeed financially and in terms of clinical quality.