Hospital Execs Uncertain ACOs Will Actually Improve Quality and Efficiency

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There are many reasons hospital executives may be planning to form Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs), but belief in the potential of ACOs to improve care delivery does not appear to be at the top of that list according to a survey released this week.

U.S. News and Fidelity Investments surveyed executives at 1,852 hospitals on various issues affecting the operations and financial soundness of their organizations, and a telling disconnect appeared between the number of hospital execs who said their institutions were likely to form an ACO and the number who thought that ACOs would improve health care quality and efficiency.

On a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being extremely likely and 5 being not at all likely, more than two thirds of the executives checked 1 or 2 for the likelihood their hospital would form an ACO. But when the question was how likely ACOs were to improve quality and efficient delivery, nearly two thirds answered between 3 and 5. See chart below.

imageOther highlights of the survey included:

  • More than two thirds of executives were extremely or very concerned about increased federal scrutiny of Medicare payments through more intensive auditing.
  • More than half were extremely concerned about the impact of increased regulatory mandates and oversight.
  • More than half were extremely or very concerned about their hospital’s transition to electronic medical records.

To view all the survey results, click here.

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