Providers Worry ACOs Could Violate Antitrust Laws

"Doctors and hospitals eager to pursue a new model of health care being promoted by the Obama administration are raising concerns that they could run afoul of antitrust and anti-fraud laws, and insurers are warning that the new arrangements could lead to higher prices for medical care," Kaiser Health News/The Washington Post reports. "The differences will be hashed out Tuesday, when hundreds of health-care representatives are to attend a meeting with federal officials in Baltimore. The session is being conducted by the Federal Trade Commission, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Office of the Inspector General of the Health and Human Services Department… Whether ACOs, which are just a concept, can be made to work might determine whether the health-care law succeeds in lowering costs and improving care for consumers" (Gold and Galewitz, 10/5).

Mondaq News Alerts: "While ACOs are often touted as the solution to many of the ailments of the current model of healthcare delivery for Medicare, including the need for enhanced quality, improved outcomes, better coordination of care, and greater cost-savings, there are many misconceptions about the Shared Savings Program and a growing list of questions about what form ACOs will take under the law." The article examines "some of the common misconceptions about ACOs and the Shared Savings Program" (Stallings and Rawlings, 10/5).

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