ASCRS-Led Advocacy Efforts Result in CMS Finalizing Provision in Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) Final Rule Allowing Ophthalmologists to Participate as a "Full-Fledged" Participant in More Than One ACO
CMS released a final rule on ACOs, entitled Medicare Shared Savings Program: Accountable Care Organizations. As you are aware, CMS' implementation of their previous ACO final rule limited the ability of specialists to participate in more than one ACO as a full-fledged participant, including sharing in savings and penalties. ASCRS/ASOA was the first organization to identify this issue and subsequently organized a coalition to bring this to CMS and advocate for its resolution.
This final rule implements the necessary changes that will allow for ophthalmologists to participate in more than one ACO as a full-fledged participant. While the previous rule precluded any practice that performed evaluation and management services from full-fledged participation in more than one ACO, in this final rule, CMS excludes services provided by certain specialties from being limited to full participation in one ACO, including ophthalmology.