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One part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act that’s hit American health care like the British Invasion are affordable care organizations, or ACOs. At first, there were just a few, then some more and now they’re all over the place, just as The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, the Who, the Kinks and other groups took over American pop culture in the 1960s.

In an ACO, doctors, hospitals, Medicare, providers and patients come together like John, Paul, George and Ringo to coordinate health care with the idea of improving quality and reducing costs. When PPACA was passed, ACOs were touted as a way to lower health care expenditures under Medicare and encourage collaborative care among providers. ACOs now have been around long enough to quantify some results of their efforts, even though the transition hasn’t been easy. By all appearances, ACOs are going to be around while so benefits brokers and agents should possess a better understanding of ACOs to better serve clients and beneficiaries.

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