Northwest Momentum Health Partners in Thurston County has been chosen to participate in the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Service’s accountable care organization model, dubbed Next Generation ACO.

ACOs are groups of health care providers who come together to offer high quality care at lower costs to Medicare patients. Participants in the Next Generation ACO program, which debuted last year, do so by setting predictable financial targets and enabling providers and beneficiaries greater opportunities to coordinate care.

The specific goal of the Next Generation model is to test whether strong financial incentives for ACOs — rewarding quality rather than quantity of care — can improve health outcomes and lower expenditures for Original Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries.

 “Northwest Momentum Health Partners is pleased to participate as a Next Generation ACO Model,” said Melanie Matthews, CEO of Physicians of Southwest Washington, the independent physician association that will administer the ACO.

“We look forward to working with our provider network to deliver better care for their Medicare beneficiaries, better health for our region’s population while aiming to reduce cost of care.”

NWMHP, which was established last year by Physicians of Southwest Washington, is one of 28 ACOs joining the Next Generation model in 2017, bringing the total number in the program to 45. It is currently the only ACO in Washington participating in the model.