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Pioneer ACO Model Brought $384 Million in Savings to Medicare

By Vera Gruessner

Healthcare systems began developing Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) after the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was passed on March 23, 2010. Since then, the number of ACOs has grown substantially and led to some significant improvements for the healthcare industry.

On May 4, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released an evaluation report that illustrates one unique payment model – called the Pioneer ACO Model -developed as a pilot program through the Affordable Care Act has led to significant savings for Medicare over the last two years.

Along with the cost savings, the independent Office of the Actuary in the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has stated that this accountable care model is the first one to reach the complex criteria for expanding across a broader population of Medicare beneficiaries.

The Pioneer Accountable Care Organization Model was able to garner more thanĀ $384 million in savings to Medicare over the last two years, the report stated. These savings would be a reduction of around $300 per Medicare beneficiary each year all the while providing high-quality patient care.

The report also shows that Pioneer ACOs were able to saveĀ $279.7 million in 2012 and $104.5 million in 2013 among Medicare beneficiaries. In total, the Pioneer ACO Model and the Medicare Shared Savings Program garnered $417 million in program savings for Medicare, according to the actuarial analyses.

For more information about the Pioneer ACO Model, the primary analyses are reported in The Journal of the American Medical Association and on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) website.

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