Frequently Asked Questions
What is Doctors Connected ®?
Doctors Connected is the name of an ACO made up of Carilion Clinic providers and some of our partners. This is a partnership between Carilion Clinic, some of our partner physicians, and Medicare to provide coordinated care for Medicare fee-for-service patients.
What is an ACO?
An ACO is a group of doctors and other health care providers who agree to work together with Medicare to coordinate care. The goal of the ACO is to support your doctor in caring for you. ACOs help your doctor and healthcare providers work together more closely by making sure they have the most up-to-date information about your health and your care.
Why is Carilion Clinic participating in an ACO?
Participating in an ACO helps us to fulfill our mission to improve the health of the communities that we serve.
What if I don’t want to be in an ACO, can I opt out?
Patients are not part of an ACO so you can't opt in or out of it. Your physician is the one who participates in the program.
How does being in an ACO help my doctor?
Doctors in ACOs will have better access to the expertise, staff, information, and technology that they need to make sure your care is coordinated across all of the places you receive services.
Does this mean my doctor decides what care I can receive?
An ACO is not a Medicare Advantage Plan or a Health Maintenance Organization (HMO). Nothing changes with your Medicare benefits. You still have traditional Medicare coverage. You can still go to any doctor, hospital, or other provider that accepts Medicare. Nobody can restrict which providers you see.
Doesn’t my doctor already have the most up-to-date information through the electronic medical record?
Your doctor has access to the most up-to-date information about the care you receive through their office. Your doctor may not necessarily have information about care that you receive through other providers. The ACO can help your doctor know about other care that you receive through information that Medicare shares with them.
What information about me will the ACO have access to?
Medicare will share with the ACO information about medical services that you receive like doctor, hospital, and pharmacy visits in the past and moving forward. The ACO will not have access to your complete medical record. The data that is shared will be claims information aimed at letting the ACO know about services that you received, which will create opportunities for the ACO to enhance your care.
How can I decline to have my personal health information shared?
To prevent your information from being shared:
- Call 1-800 MEDICARE (1-800-663-4227). Tell the operator you are calling about ACOs.
What if I change my mind and decide that it's okay for Medicare and the ACO to share information?
If you change your mind in the future, you can call Medicare at 1-800-MEDICARE and tell them you've changed your mind.
My relative received a letter from the ACO, but they passed away recently. Doesn’t the doctor’s office know when patients pass away?
We are sorry to hear about your loss. These letters were sent because your family member received care in the past from one of our physicians. The mailing list may have been created before your family member passed away. Their doctor's office should be aware of their passing, but you can also contact us at 1-855-336-9005 so we can follow up with the doctor's office. We will need to know your family member's name, date of birth, and who their doctor was.
ACO Leadership & Organization
For information about our governing body and our organization, please click here.
If you have questions or concerns, please call us toll-free at 1‑855‑336‑9005 or talk with your doctor during your next visit. You can also visit www.medicare.gov/acos or call 1‑800‑MEDICARE (1‑800‑633‑4227; TTY users should call 1‑877‑486‑2048) for questions or additional information about Next Generation Accountable Care Organizations.
See an alphabetical list of doctors participating in the Doctors Connected® ACO.
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