MD Affiliation Program

Consultation #75

 From the Desk of:

William J Owens Jr DC, DAAMLP, CPC

“What are Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs)?

According the ACA, the Federal Government has just ruled that chiropractors can be part of an ACO, which stands for accountable care organization.  Many doctors don’t understand what these are and what they are for, but there is a mandate they be implemented as of January, 2012.  We will see what happens.  You will start to hear more about this as payors and providers work together to create and maintain these organizations.  The key for you to understand is that these are groups of primary care physicians that provide care in an evidenced based outcome driven environment.  Specialists play a role, but care is organized and driven by primary care.  There is a good article in the New England Journal of Medicine that will give you a decent idea of what they are.

What you should take away from this is your ability to position yourself in your community at the BEGINNING of all this.  Focus on building relationships and asking questions.  This is critical since chiropractors have a place.  This is not a guarantee for chiropractic but it is a way for us to see MORE patients and showcase our outcomes.  Like it or not, evidence-based and outcomes-oriented care is here to stay in one form or another.  Start to SLOWLY educate yourself and position your office to be the chiropractic provider that gets the picture.  Make friends in this system, show that you can operate as part of a group and you will NEVER have to ask for a patient again! {jcomments on}

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