Humana and Norton Healthcare’s Pilot ACO Triggered Both Increased Utilization of Clinical Laboratory Tests and Improved Patient Outcomes
Clinical laboratory managers and pathologists will want to develop strategies for adding value under ACO model
One lesson learned from a pilot accountable care organization (ACO) project is that increased utilization of clinical laboratory testing in appropriate circumstances will contribute to improved patient outcomes. Just one year into a pilot ACO partnership, Norton Healthcare and insurer Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM) have shown quality gains and some modest savings.
This is encouraging news for pathologists and clinical laboratory managers. It shows that, when physicians participating in ACOs more closely follow evidence-based medicine (EBM) guidelines, the increase in lab test utilization can play the expected role in improving diagnosis and guiding therapeutic choices. However, it should be noted that the results disclosed by the Norton/Humana ACO pilot only cover a short period of time. (more…)