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November 1, 2017 Headlines 3 Comments

CMS Releases Medicare Shared Savings Program 2016 Results

Former National Coordinator for Health IT Farzad Mostashari, MD analyzes the recently released MSSP performance data, concluding that population health-driven savings increase with time, and noting that ACOs appear to consistently outperform fee-for-service organizations on quality measures.

Community Health Systems, Inc. Announces Third Quarter 2017 Results with Net Operating Revenues of $3.666 Billion

Community Health Systems (TN) reports Q3 results: revenue fell 16 percent to $3.7 billion, EPS -$0.96 vs. -$0.69, missing on both. Share prices fell seven percent in after hours trading.

Here are the final recommendations of the White House opioid commission

The White House Opioid Commission publishes its final report on combating the opioid epidemic. The report makes 56 recommendations, including expanded use of block grants to fund state-level initiatives, a mandate that HHS establish prescriber guidelines and educational materials covering the use of opioids in pain management, mandated deployment of state-level PDMPs, bolstered prosecution and criminal penalties, and a media blitz aimed at informing the public of treatment options. The commission also recommends that “CMS remove pain survey questions entirely on patient satisfaction surveys, so that providers are never incentivized for offering opioids.”

Google Is Backing an Eclectic Group of Startups That Use AI in Health Care

Alphabet startup incubatorLaunchpad Studio announces its first class of companies, all of which are startups using AI to tackle healthcare problems.

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Currently there are "3 comments" on this Article:

  1. Farzad writes a self serving article on MSSP programs and ACOs as that is his business model.
    ACOs are failing at a HUGE rate and CMS/Farzad NEVER discuss the COSTS of setting up, running and maintaining an ACO. Its NEVER factored it, ever. These savings are literally minuscule and with the COSTS they are a net negative.
    The ONLY reason the quality numbers show anything is that they are self reported and ACOs in general have better computer systems to self report perfection. Quality numbers are total nonsense.
    Everyone should read Kip Sullivan’s real reviews of ACOs and MSSP program results on The HealthCare Blog as he has NO HUGE conflict of interest like Farzad.
    ACOs and all these quality “value” buzzword care models are a NET negative when factoring in costs,

    • Maybe you should read the article instead of the headline. Also I’d like to see some data for the idea that they’re a net negative. How can that be so if there’s no data on it? You seem very certain. I read Kip Sullivan’s article – he’s skeptical but does not offer a conclusion that meaningfully counters Farzad’s. Kip Sullivan also does not really acknowledge the present value of interventions themselves as a trade off against future more expensive care that the intervention could help mitigate. Farzad also acknowledges your point directly which you would have known if you read the article:

      “Of the 106 ACOs that started in the MSSP in 2013, now only 74 remain. This is an expected outcome and a good one. Moving from fee-for-service (FFS) to value also involves moving into a more competitive environment. ACO work is hard. It competes with other priorities. Not every ACO is going to succeed in implementing interventions that will make a difference over the long run. A certain amount of creative destruction is necessary in this new, competitive value-driven healthcare world.”

      • Wrong Ayn,
        Kip specifically points out the complete failure of ACO’s. Referenced. Creative destruction? Nice term for killing practices, how much damage in cost and lives goes with that? How much do these ACO’s cost to implement, run and maintain. Never a SINGLE mention. Because, low and behold, its VERY expensive and this would show the impossibility of success. Even without those numbers the savings are PALTRY. I mean VERY paltry. Factor in ANY costs (and there are huge costs). ACO’s are failure. Period. Look ,even Dartmouth, the original gangster of ACO’s quit the game. You cannot tell patients, hey, make sure you see one of our ACO doctors ONLY, that doesn’t work. And patients are not dumb, they KNOW when they are getting the slow and non treatment for their problems, its just HMO’s in new clothes. It is the mechanism for savings. Do everything you can to NOT keep costs down. Period. Its the only way this works. Self reported quality measures are not measuring quality. You want to be taken care of by an ACO doc, go right ahead.

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