2020 ACO Application Timeline Released

April 2019 ~

CMS has announced the date it will start accepting notices of intent to apply to participate in the overhaul of the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) – which is now being called ‘Pathways to Success.’

CMS, on June 11, says it will start accepting perspective notices from accountable care organizations (ACOs) that intend to join the revamped program in 2020, and the application window runs from July 1 through 12:00PM on July 29. The agency expects ACO agreements with CMS to be signed in December.

CMS finished the ACO program overhaul in a December 2018 rule that shortened the time ACOs can participate without the risk of penalties for poor performance and lowered the shared savings rate for those one-sided ACOs from 50% to 40% — an increase from the proposed 25 percent shared savings rate. ACOs that applied for the first application cycle under the new rules will start on July 1.

CMS will accept non-binding Notices of Intent to Apply for that application cycle from June 11 through 12:00PM on June 28. Shortly after on July 1, CMS will begin accepting ACO applications. That application window will be open until noon on July 29.

Following these dates, the agency expects to have three requests for information for each ACO application type – Medicare Shared Savings Program initial contracts and renewals or early renewals, those applying for a waiver from Medicare’s requirement that beneficiaries must be treated for three days in a hospital before the program will pay for nursing home care, and the beneficiary incentive program.

“RFIs give applicants the opportunity to correct certain application deficiencies, make certain modifications to the ACO Participant List and/or SNF Affiliate List (SNF 3-Day Rule Waiver applicants only), and make other modifications,” noted CMS.

According to the announcement, the agency expects to have ACOs sign their agreements with CMS in December.


Source(s): CMS; Inside Health Policy;