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Few People Switch Medicare Advantage Plans Each Year, Raising Questions About Whether Seniors Have the Tools and Information They Need To Compare Plans  

A small share of Medicare Advantage enrollees switch plans each year, but those who do tend to pick plans with lower premiums and out-of-pocket limits than the plans they left behind, according to a new analysis by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Eleven percent of enrollees voluntarily switched from one Medicare…

Medicare Advantage Plan Switching: Exception or Norm?

The Medicare open enrollment period allows enrollees to compare plans, stick with their current plan, switch to another plan, or shift to traditional Medicare. This analysis examines the extent to which Medicare Advantage enrollees change plans when given the opportunity. It also analyzes the variation in the rate of plan switching by enrollee and plan characteristics and whether people who voluntarily switch plans tend to move to plans with lower premiums, lower out-of-pocket limits, or higher quality ratings.

Medicare Part D in 2016 and Trends over Time

This chartpack presents a summary of Part D enrollment, premiums, cost sharing, benefit design and other key trends in 2016 and changes over time. For 2016, the analysis finds that 40% of Part D enrollees are now in Medicare Advantage drug plans, and over half of all enrollees are in plans offered by just three firms. The chartpack also highlights some concerning trends in the Low-Income Subsidy market, with the fewest number of premium-free plans available since Part D started, and 1.5 million LIS enrollees paying premiums for coverage, even though they have premium-free options available.

The Facts on Medicare Spending and Financing

This issue brief examines the latest facts about Medicare spending and financing, includes the most recent historical and projected Medicare spending data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Office of the Actuary (OACT), the 2016 annual report of the Boards of Medicare Trustees, and the 2016 Medicare baseline and projections from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). It discusses historical and projected spending trends, program financing, Medicare’s financial condition, the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), and the future outlook.

Medicare Advantage Hospital Networks: How Much Do They Vary?

This report takes an in-depth look at Medicare Advantage plans’ hospital networks. The analysis draws upon data from 409 Medicare Advantage plans serving beneficiaries in 20 diverse counties that together accounted for about one in seven (14%) Medicare Advantage enrollees nationwide in 2015. The report examines the size and composition of plans’ hospital networks, the variation across counties, the inclusion of Academic Medical Centers and NCI-Designated Cancer Centers, and the relationship between network size and other plan features, including premiums, quality star ratings, per capita Medicare spending, parent organization, and plan tax status.

Medicare Advantage

This fact sheet provides an overview of the Medicare Advantage program, describes program changes made by the new health reform law in plan participation and beneficiary enrollment, presents data on benefits and premiums, and explains changes in Medicare payments to participating plans.

Medicare Advantage 2016 Spotlight: Enrollment Market Update

This Data Spotlight reviews national and state-level enrollment trends as of March 2016 and examines variation in enrollment by plan type and firm. It analyzes the most recent data on premiums, out-of-pocket limits, Part D cost-sharing for drugs, and plans’ quality ratings for Medicare Advantage enrollees.

An Overview of Medicare

This issue brief provides an overview of Medicare, the health insurance program for people ages 65 and over and younger people with permanent disabilities. The brief review the characteristics of people on Medicare, what Medicare covers, benefit gaps and supplemental coverage, beneficiaries’ out-of-pocket health care spending, program spending and financing, payment and delivery system reform, and issues for the future of Medicare.

Policy Insight Examines How Current Rules May Deter Seniors From Switching from Medicare Advantage to Traditional Medicare and Implications for Medicare’s Future

In this new policy insight, the Kaiser Family Foundation’s Tricia Neuman examines current rules that may discourage seniors from switching from Medicare Advantage to traditional Medicare.Traditional Medicare…Disadvantaged? explores this issue through the lens of a 67-year old Boomer who faced difficult financial and health coverage choices in the aftermath of…

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.