- CMS announced on Thursday that Medicare accountable care organizations have saved more than $1.29 billion since 2012.
- In 2015 alone, the ACOs noted combined total program savings of $466 million, which includes all ACO's experiences, for 392 Medicare Shared Savings Program participants and 12 Pioneer ACO participants.
- However, out of the 392 MSSP participants, only 119 of those -- less than a third -- earned shared shavings.
The efforts gave care to over 7.7 million Medicare beneficiaries. Notably, all 12 participants in the Pioneer model, in its fourth year, improved their quality scores from 2012 to 2015 by more than 21 percentage points. Overall quality scores for nine out of 12 Pioneer participants were more than 90% in 2015.
For the MSSP program, while the ACOs collectively generated $429 million in savings, the picture can be seen through rose-colored lenses. Eighty-three ACOs had healthcare costs lower than their benchmark, but did not qualify for shared savings, as they did not meet the minimum savings, the agency noted. CMS added that ACOs that got in early and had more experience were more likely to generate savings. For example, 42% of ACOs that started in 2012 generated savings above their minimum savings rate, compared to 21% of 2015 starters.
On the quality front, the MSSP ACOs improved on 84% of the quality measures reported from 2014 to 2015. The average quality performance improved by over 15% between 2014 and 2015 for four measures: Screening for risk of future falls, depression screening, blood pressure screening, and providing pneumonia vaccinations.