The ACOs are part of the Medicare Shared Savings program in which providers and the government share health care cost savings above certain thresholds while meeting 33 care quality measures. About half of the ACOs are physician-led organizations serving less than 10,000 beneficiaries, according to CMS.
Fifteen of the new ACOs are participating in the Advanced Payment Model program. They receive upfront capital from Medicare to enhance staff, I.T. and infrastructure, with Medicare recouping the payments over time. Applications will be available in the summer of 2013 for organizations wishing to join the program in 2014. CMS also announced that Medicaid spending per beneficiary rose 0.4 percent in 2012, compared with 3.6 percent in 2011 A list of new ACOs is at www.cms.gov/Medicare/ Medicare-Fee-for-Service-Payment/sharedsavingsprogram/News.html.