The Dawning of the Age of Accountable Care? Federal Agencies Reveal Rules for Accountable Care Organizations

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Rushing to avoid being cast as an April Fools’ publication, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published its proposed rule implementing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)’s Section 3022, the Medicare Shared Savings Program for Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs). The proposed rule is set for publication on April 7, 2011, but an advance copy of 426 pages is available at the Publication Desk of the Federal Register under the CMS section. There is a 60-day public comment period on the proposed rule. In addition to the proposed rule, CMS and the Office of Inspector General (OIG) jointly issued a 27-page notice with comment period for Waiver Designs in Connection with the Medicare Shared Savings Program and the Innovation Center. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice (DOJ), and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) also issued press releases and guidance on the impact of participation in the Shared Savings Program on antitrust and taxation considerations.

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