September 2016

This study, from the journal HealthCare, examined ACO and market factors associated with superior financial performance in Medicare ACO programs. When modeling ACOs’ ability to save and earn shared savings payments, the study found: (1) positive associations for a greater proportion of primary care providers in the ACO; (2) more practicing physicians on the governing board, in physician leadership roles, and actively engaged in reducing hospital readmissions; (3) a greater proportion of disabled Medicare beneficiaries assigned to the ACO; (4) financial incentives offered to physicians; (5) a larger financial benchmark; and (6) greater ACO market penetration. An ACO’s prior experience with risk-bearing contracts was also positively correlated with savings and significantly increased the likelihood of receiving shared savings payments.


ACO News is a feature of the Medicaid Accountable Care Organization Resource Center, an online collection of tools designed to help Medicaid agencies develop and launch accountable care organizations.