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AMN Healthcare

Health Care

Physician Alignment Primary Obstacle to Accountable Care Organizations

Health facility leaders and physicians must align their interests, communicate, and cooperate

Published: Monday, June 20, 2011 - 16:10

(AMN Healthcare, San Diego) -- Health care facility administrators and physicians report that the most serious obstacle they face in forming Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) is physician alignment, according to a new survey.

The survey, conducted by AMN Healthcare, the largest health care staffing and workforce solutions organization in the United States, asked hospital executives and physicians about their participation in ACOs, and whether or not ACOs will deliver significant cost and quality benefits.

According to AMN Healthcare president and CEO Susan Salka, the survey underscores what is the central issue regarding both ACO formation and the industry-wide effort to enhance quality of care and reduce costs.

"While capital and data are essential to forming ACOs, the success of this emerging model turns on people. Health facility leaders and physicians must align their interests, communicate, and cooperate for this model to work," Salka notes.

Fifty-eight percent of 882 administrators and physicians responding to the survey indicated their facilities are either in the process of forming ACOs or are considering doing so, while 42 percent said their facilities will not form ACOs in the foreseeable future.

Of those who are moving toward ACOs, 42 percent said physician alignment is the most serious obstacle to their efforts, followed by lack of capital (38%), lack of integrated IT systems (31%), and lack of evidence-based treatment protocol data (25%).

Of those who are not moving toward ACOs, 40 percent cited physician alignment as a reason they are not, followed by lack of capital (31%), lack of integrated IT systems (26%), and lack of evidence-based treatment protocol data (23%).

The survey further suggests that the majority of health care facility administrators and physicians still hold out hope that ACOs will deliver significant cost and quality benefits over time. Fifty-nine percent of those surveyed either strongly agreed or somewhat agreed that ACOs will deliver benefits and that they are a key to enhancing quality and reducing costs. However, a significant minority (41%) either strongly disagreed or somewhat disagreed with that statement.

Click here to go to AMN's Industry Research page and scan down to the Survey section to find the "Physician Alignment Primary Obstacle to ACO Formation" item.


About The Author

AMN Healthcare’s picture

AMN Healthcare

AMN Healthcare Services Inc. is the nation’s largest provider of comprehensive health care staffing and work-force solutions, and health care managed services programs and recruitment process outsourcing solutions. AMN Healthcare recruits and places health care professionals on assignments of variable lengths and in permanent positions with clients throughout the United States. Settings staffed include acute-care hospitals, government facilities, community health centers and clinics, physician practice groups, and other settings. AMN Healthcare also provides home health care services in select regions.


So, maybe it’s all coming

So, maybe it’s all coming down to people management. There’s obviously got to be better organization on a number of fronts for things to actually fall in place, and function correctly.

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