Peter B. Bach, MD, Discusses How ACOs and PCHMs Drive Cost Savings

Peter B. Bach, MD, MAPP, director, Center for Health Policy and Outcomes, and attending physician at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, says accountable care organizations (ACOs) and patient-centered medical homes (PCMHs) may have the potential to drive cost savings, especially in clinical areas such as readmissions.

Peter B. Bach, MD, MAPP, director, Center for Health Policy and Outcomes, and attending physician at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, says accountable care organizations (ACOs) and patient-centered medical homes (PCMHs) may have the potential to drive cost savings, especially in clinical areas such as readmissions.

“Everything we try in healthcare seems at first blush to have the potential to save costs,” he says, “and 1 of the 2 reasons it fails to happen is because you end up getting ‘very heavy patient selection issues’ so you end up with a group that isn’t representative, and the processes can’t be generalized to — in many cases — the high cost drivers of care.”

The other reason he suggests is the fixed and ongoing costs in ACOs and PCHMs, for example increased staffing. Overall, he says, it’s “vastly more important for patients.”