Where Does Oncology Fit in the Scheme of Accountable Care?
+ Author Affiliations
- Corresponding author: Ronald R. Barkley, Cancer Center Business Development Group, 49 Perry Rd, Bedford, NH 03110; e-mail: email@example.com.
With cancer services representing 10% of health care costs, oncology would seem an attractive candidate for achieving cost savings, which could then be shared under the umbrella of an accountable care organization (ACO), the vehicle through which the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has implemented the Medicare Shared Savings Program. The Cancer Center Business Summit focused its 2011 annual survey on the topic of oncology's fit within the context of accountable care planning and discovered that oncology, for a variety of reasons, is not considered an attractive candidate for readily achievable cost savings in an ACO initiative. However, despite the somewhat marginal status of oncology within accountable care initiatives, the commercial health insurance sector has been quite active in pursuing nontraditional and innovative methodologies in payment redesign for oncology services. This article explores the key findings and implications of the 2011 Summit survey, Positioning and Payment for Oncology Within Accountable Care Initiatives.