Policy

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, hospitals will spend $5.6 billion less on uncompensated hospital care, according to Health & Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell, reports USA Today.

The Accountable Care Act is fueling positive changes in healthcare, as it pushes the industry toward EHRs, analytics and preventative care. This movement is improving patients’ health and care delivery while lowering costs, former Coordinator for Health IT Farzad Mostashari, MD, MSc, wrote in an editorial in the New York Times.

The cost of the federal health insurance exchange’s portal is now estimated to be more than $2 billion, according to an analysis by Bloomberg Government, reports The Hill. 

The government's release of first-year cost-savings results for its accountable care organization (ACO) project and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Innovation Center delivery system reform pilot projects have drawn criticism from both the New York Times and the Washington Post, which published articles pointing out the problems with drawing conclusions from studies that are not true randomized controlled trials. In short, correlation is not causation, and the early results, while interesting, are not the same as proof that ACOs and new reimbursement methods like bundled payments actually deliver better care more cheaply. In a commentary, Bloomberg News summarized the controversy.