Balance ACO Approved as One of the Newest Participants in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Shared Savings Program
Over 9,000 Medicare Recipients Throughout the New York City Area and Yonkers to Receive High Quality Services and Improved Care Coordination
(New York, NY, August 1, 2012) – Balance ACO was among the select few recipients that received approval in July from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to participate in the Accountable Care Organization (ACO) Shared Savings Program. One of only 88 new organizations selected nation-wide, Balance ACO includes over 1,000 participating physicians in the Bronx, Manhattan, Queens, and Yonkers who will implement measures to improve the care of the over 9,000 Medicare beneficiaries assigned to the ACO.

As part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, CMS established the ACO Medicare Shared Savings Program to facilitate coordination and cooperation among providers to improve the quality of care for Medicare Fee-For-Service beneficiaries while reducing unnecessary costs. In return for the opportunity to share in savings realized through improvement to care and service coordination, ACO participants are tasked with improving beneficiary outcomes and increasing the value of care by promoting increased accountability; coordination of care; and investment in infrastructure and redesigned care processes. The Shared Savings Program will reward ACOs that lower their growth in health care costs while meeting performance standards on quality of care and putting patients first.

"Better coordinated care is good for patients and it saves money," said Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Kathleen Sebelius. "We applaud every one of these doctors, hospitals, health centers and others for working together to ensure millions of people with Medicare get better, more patient-centered, coordinated care."

"We are delighted to have received approval for Balance ACO. We will work diligently to build upon efforts to improve the quality of care and coordination of services for our assigned beneficiaries. Improvements in patient care are particularly important due to the poor health states of the medically underserved high-need communities that we serve. Individually, Balance ACO member physicians have a record of implementing novel strategies to improve patient care; participation in the ACO will allow for more focused and efficient use of our resources to provide excellent patient care while reducing health care costs," said Dr. Ramon Tallaj, Chairman of Balance ACO. "As a community-based ACO, we are deeply committed to improving the lives of our patients."

Under the leadership of Dr. Tallaj, Balance ACO has recruited a number of distinguished Board Members, including Dr. Oscar Fukilman, Dr. Emilio Villegas, and Dr. Sumir Sahgal, who will also serve at the Chief Medical Officer. To ensure patient representation, Mr. Ramon Ramos has been elected to the Board as Medicare Beneficiary Representative.

For more information about Balance ACO please contact (212) 567-1104.