November 1, 2011

CMS’s release of the final regulations for accountable care organizations in October created a buzz across the healthcare sector. Industry organizations, policy specialists, and other stakeholders were quick to note that the regulations were much less onerous than expected, and projections for participation in the Shared Savings Program grew.

The final regulations did little to improve the likelihood that the Shared Savings Program will actually improve healthcare cost or quality, however. In an editorial for Pharmaceutical Commerce, ACOs and Their Impact on Pharma, NAI President Rita E. Numerof, Ph.D. explains how the final rules failed to address the fundamental flaws of the ACO model, and outlines implications of ACOs for pharmaceutical companies’ commercial and product development strategies going forward.