Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) are groups of doctors, hospitals and other healthcare providers, who come together voluntarily to give coordinated high-quality care to their Medicare patients.

As of 2017, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) reports that there are over 10 million beneficiaries attributed to a Medicare ACO, including 9 million in MSSP ACOs and 1.4 million in Next Generation ACOs.

The goal of coordinated care is to ensure that patients, especially the chronically ill, get the right care at the right time, while avoiding unnecessary duplication of services and preventing medical errors. When an ACO succeeds both in delivering high-quality care and spending healthcare dollars more wisely, it will share in the savings it achieves for the Medicare program.

CMS generally attributes beneficiaries to ACOs based on their primary care provider’s affiliation with a Medicare ACO, but beneficiaries are free to seek services from any Medicare provider in or out of the ACO. Within the MSSP, about 8 million Medicare beneficiaries are attributed to a Track 1 ACO nd just under 1 million beneficiaries are in either Track 2 or Track 3 ACOs (the number of Track 1+ beneficiaries is not yet available).

Source: Remington Report