Medicare has clarified that providers cannot participate in both accountable care organizations (ACOs) and coming direct-contracting arrangements after 2020. The clarification — and others — came amid early provider feedback on the model, which is slated to start this spring.
Providers sought a range of clarifications on the Direct Contracting model from staff of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) during a series of webinars throughout December.
In the model, the various options allow CMS to directly contract with Medicare providers and suppliers, which will have financial accountability for the cost and quality of care of for a defined beneficiary population. CMS staff has described the new models, which run through 2025, as an update to its ACO program. Coincidentally, the Next Generation ACO model ends in December 2020.