U.S. health insurer
) has agreed to form an Accountable Care Organization (ACO) with
Riverside Health System. This is in sync with the company's
effort to improve the safety and quality of patient care and make
health care more affordable.
An ACO is a collaboration of health care providers, who
voluntarily form alliances to provide coordinated high quality
care to patients. An ACO is accountable for the quality, cost,
and overall care offered to members. By focusing on the needs of
patients and linking payments to outcomes, the model is intended
to improve the health of individuals and communities and curb
rising health care costs.
Aetna will also provide service via Aetna Whole Health, which
will enable members to get coordinated care from physicians and
health care facilities.
The health insurer will introduce a new provider network known
as Coastal Virginia Health Partners. The network will include
Riverside Health System, Bon Secours Health System, Children's
Hospital of The King's Daughters and Chesapeake Regional Medical
Via this ACO Aetna aims to provide a more synchronized,
personalized experience for patients; lower co-pays and improved
health care outcomes.
This is the third ACO agreement of Aetna in Virginia. In the
region, Aetna already has a joint venture with Inova and Carilion
An ACO or collaborative accountable care is one of the several
ways by which President Obama is introducing improvements in the
quality of health of all Americans. It is viewed as a tool that
would deliver seamless, high quality care for the overall
The Health Care Reform called for such an arrangement in order
to trim unnecessary expenses associated with the absence of
coordination between multiple physicians and other providers.
Most Americans with multiple chronic conditions receive care from
multiple physicians, and it has been observed that few patients
were not taken care of to the fullest extent possible by some
physicians. A large percentage of the sick population ended up
being victims of medical errors and faced hospital readmissions
within days of their discharge. Thus, ACOs were formed to reduce
the exorbitant amounts spent due to lack of managed care.
Other health insurers like
UnitedHealth Group Inc.
) are also aggressively forming ACOs. Going forward, we expect
such patient-centered collaborations to rapidly grow in
Aetna currently retains a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Health care
provider under our coverage,
Molina Healthcare, Inc.
), among other health care providers, carries Zacks Rank # 2
(Buy) and is worth noting.
AETNA INC-NEW (AET): Free Stock Analysis
CIGNA CORP (CI): Free Stock Analysis Report
MOLINA HLTHCR (MOH): Free Stock Analysis
UNITEDHEALTH GP (UNH): Free Stock Analysis
To read this article on Zacks.com click here.