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NJ lawmakers advance ACO bill

Declaring the healthcare system "hopelessly broken," lawmakers in Trenton are advancing legislation that would provide financial rewards to doctors, hospitals and insurance companies for preventing and controlling illnesses — rather than just treating them — in New Jersey's poorest communities. In short, the effort is based on the old proverb: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. In this case, supporters say, it's worth millions in health care costs. The Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee last week unanimously approved a bill that would enable five groups of medical professionals and managed care companies that treat at least 5,000 Medicaid patients to form an "accountable care organization" — one of the latest buzzwords contained in the federal health care reform law.
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