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For ACOs

Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) should reference the following resources when applying for and participating in the Shared Savings Program.

Application submission activities and certain program operations are conducted in the ACO Management System (ACO-MS).

Program Participation Information

ACOs agree to participate in the Shared Savings Program for a period of no less than three years, known as the agreement period.

The agreement period includes three performance years that cycle through the same operational phases.

Over the course of an agreement period, ACOs:

  • Engage in various activities during the performance year, including coordinating care for beneficiaries, measuring and improving quality, and public reporting;
  • Prepare for the next performance year by making sure contact information is current in CMS systems and completing the Annual Certification process; and
  • Receive financial and quality performance results after the close of every performance year.

The graphic below depicts the main operational phases that make up the agreement period.

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Program Lifecycle


Information for Applicants

All ACO applicants (including initial, renewal, Medicare ACO Track 1+ Model (Track 1+ Model), and Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) 3-Day Rule Waiver applicants) should reference the following resources.

Types and Process Application Toolkit for ACOs Webinars for ACOs

Application Types & Process

Find sample applications and related resources.

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Application Toolkit

Find the Application Reference Manual and guidance to help ACOs apply to the Shared Savings Program.

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Application Webinars

Find presentations sharing tips for completing various application types.

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Application Questions?


Program Data

CMS makes data on Shared Savings Program ACOs publicly available through several resources, including On this page, find more information related to Shared Savings Program ACO participation and performance.

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