ACO Final Rules Intend to Encourage Consolidation

Leaders fear change. They fear taking on risk. And perhaps most importantly, they fear that accountable care organizations will turn out to be another failed payment experiment from the federal government. Some may rightly consider ACO participation as the worse of two bad options. In that case, it's time to consider consolidation.

1 comments on "ACO Final Rules Intend to Encourage Consolidation"
R Daniel King (10/28/2011 at 3:51 PM)

Accountable care organizations will fail without accountable leadership starting with government. Five decades of Medicare and Medicaid price controls have caused all the negative characterisics of price controls: shortages (primary care physicians), excess (cardiologist), black marketing (drugs), organized crime (fraudulent billing), assault on civil liberties (a physician's freedom to charge a patient less than Medicare), lesser quality (IOM and HealthGrade reports)and the big one infalation. Historically, price controls cause universal inflation but cost shifting allowed Medicare to shift its inflation private insurers. Consequently, insurance premiums inflate at higher rates than Medicare making CMS look inefficient and private insurers inefficient and/or profit mongers. If "ACOs are a great common sense idea," then you have to accept bundled price controls will not fail where fee-for-service price controls did. The root cause to the US health care crisis is the leadership chasm at all levels. If we do not come to terms with this, a British op-ed will prove right, "the US will need to manage its decline." Health care leaders can either accept this or find the courage to usher in the goldern age of health care by becoming the force behind the most efficient delivery of quality, universal, integrated care. Government has failed to do this for half a century.


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