The change discussed in the article is Accountable Care Organization (ACO) under the Affordable Care Act and it is meant to improve health care quality, reduce costs and improve the satisfaction of patients. The change represents a dramatic shift in the status quo of health care delivery in health care organizations. According to the article, the change will require health care organizations to change focus from the fee-for-service system to a system whereby the right incentives are put in place to foster health and wellness. The ACO would empower people to take control of their health and participate in decision making together with the health care providers, minimize wastes and unnecessary spending while stilling meeting patient needs, increase preventive care, and increase patient satisfaction. The ACOs involve a transition from a disjointed health care delivery system to a system that is better coordinated and aligned to deliver value to patients, providers and payers.
The change will affect health care organizations, as they will need to change the structures and objectives in order to become ACOs. First, health care organizations will need to pay membership fee of $150,000 after which they would receive guidance and assessment on their readiness to become ACOs. Health care organizations will also need to adopt a common payment method and this could be costly in terms of time and resources. Health care organizations will need to form a seamless provider networks to provide care across a continuum. This means that organizations will need to integrate their processes so as to be in harmony with the change. New systems that keep patients healthy, increase focus on primary care to reduce inefficiencies, new shared savings payment structures and a move away from early interventions would be required.