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Accountable Care as a Health Reform Tool in Oregon and Massachusetts

Member Briefing - October 2013

Accountable Care as a Health Reform Tool in Oregon and Massachusetts 
Julia Feldman, JD, and Rachel Gershon, JD, MPH (
Center for Health Law and Economics, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Charlestown, MA)

Both Oregon and Massachusetts are engaging in bold experiments to improve health care quality while containing costs. Over the past few years, both states have established laws regarding accountable care entities. Oregon has established coordinated care organizations (CCOs), and plans to slow the rate of Medicaid spending growth through the use of CCOs. Massachusetts, meanwhile, has established a newly formed agency, the Health Policy Commission, charged with establishing certification requirements for all accountable care organizations in the Commonwealth.

This Member Briefing examines both states’ initiatives. Topics in this analysis include the following:
(1) description of accountable entities; (2) how these entities fit within the state’s health reform efforts; (3) who is taking the lead to establish the accountable entities in each state; (4) governance requirements; and (5) financial oversight. It is intended as a useful resource for anyone interested in accountable care in these forward-looking states.

We would like to thank the authors for sharing their expertise with their colleagues.

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