The focus in the future is on keeping you well rather than just treating you when you are sick. Cone Health has been an early leader in this transformation and we believe the communities we serve are reaping the benefits. If the trend holds, this is a story of national consequence.
Terry Akin is careful to avoid overstating the case based on limited evidence to date, but he makes it clear that early returns from the Triad HealthCare Network ACO are encouraging in terms of the most important metrics -- patient outcomes and community health -- as well as the non-trivial matters of cost and efficiency.
Accountable Care Organizations may draw political fire because of their association with Obamacare, but as a general approach they are no more controversial than the proposition that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. That's why stuff like readmission rates and chronic-care management matters so much. If this can be done at scale and sustained over time, it will be a very big deal.
Here's the N&R article by Taft Wireback cited in the op-ed.
(Disclosure: I consulted with Terry and his team on this op-ed in my role as a CH trustee.)