U.S. health insurer
) has agreed to form an Accountable Care Organization (ACO) with
New Haven Community Medical Group (NHCMG). This is in sync with
the company's effort to improve safety and quality of patient
care and to 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 intends to
improve the health of individuals and communities and curb rising
health care costs.
The program will serve 5800 fully insured plans in the Greater
New Haven area. The plan will also serve other Aetna fully
insured members if they visit a NHCMG physician.
Via this ACO Aetna aims to provide a more synchronized,
personalized experience for patients; lower co-pays and improve
health care outcomes.
NHCMG physicians will receive remuneration based on their
ability to offer quality medical care at lower rates.
ACOs or collaborative accountable care is one of the several
ways by which President Obama wants to improve 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 due to a lack 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 a few of them received
inadequate care. A large percentage of the sick population were
found to be 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
Other health insurers like
UnitedHealth Group Inc.
) are also aggressively forming ACOs. Going forward, we expect
such patient-centered collaborations to grow rapidly.
Aetna currently retains a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). Another
health care provider under our coverage,
Molina Healthcare, Inc.
), is also similarly placed with a Zacks Rank #1.
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