As a follow-up to last month’s introduction to accountable care organizations, we asked three physician experts to weigh in ACOs. Log in to join the discussion and tell us what you think of this new feature!
Accountable care organizations could mark a major transformation in how health care is delivered in the very near future. ACOs are integrated groups of doctors, hospitals and other providers who have joined together voluntarily to coordinate care for a group of patients. The purpose of this coordinated care is to improve quality and reduce costs by eliminating any unnecessary duplication of services and testing. How ophthalmology practices will relate to this new model remains to be seen.
If, in effect, ACOs cap the dollars available for care, how will participating physicians distribute resources? And how will these limited payment pools affect the quality and type of eye services that ophthalmologists can provide? With an increasing shift towards accountability for cost and quality of care, what will participating ophthalmologists and physicians need to do differently to improve patient compliance between office visits and outside the hospital setting? And how will this integration among service providers affect referral patterns and the relationships between participating physicians?
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