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The changing roles of registered nurses in Pioneer Accountable Care Organizations

  • Patricia Pittman
    Correspondence
    Corresponding author: Patricia Pittman, Department of Health Policy and Management, Milken Institute School of Public Health, The George Washington University, 2175 K Street, NW, Suite 500, Washington, D.C.
    Affiliations
    Department of Health Policy and Management, Milken Institute School of Public Health, The George Washington University, Washington, D.C.
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  • Author Footnotes
    1 Present title and affiliation are Assistant Director, Federal Government Affairs, American Association of Nurse Anesthetists.
    Emily Forrest
    Footnotes
    1 Present title and affiliation are Assistant Director, Federal Government Affairs, American Association of Nurse Anesthetists.
    Affiliations
    Department of Health Policy and Management, Milken Institute School of Public Health, The George Washington University, Washington, D.C.
    Search for articles by this author
  • Author Footnotes
    1 Present title and affiliation are Assistant Director, Federal Government Affairs, American Association of Nurse Anesthetists.

      Abstract

      Objectives

      This study focuses on whether and how Pioneer Accountable Care Organization (ACO) leaders believe the deployment of the registered nurse workforce is changing in response to the shared savings incentives.

      Methods

      Semistructured phone interviews with leaders from 18 of the original 32 Pioneer ACOs were conducted.

      Results

      Narrative analysis suggests that all of the organizations are developing new and enhanced roles for registered nurses across the continuum of care. Overall, eight types of changes were reported: enhancement of roles, substitution, delegation, increased numbers of nurses, relocation of services, transfer of nurses from one setting to another, the use of liaison nurses across settings, and partnerships between nurses coordinating care in primary and acute care settings.

      Conclusions

      This exploratory study suggests that Pioneer ACO leaders believe that payment models are affecting the deployment of the health workforce and that these changes are, in turn, driving outcomes.

      Keywords

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