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Medicare Advantage 2016 Data Spotlight: Overview of Plan Changes

This issue brief analyzes the number and variety of Medicare Advantage plan choices available to beneficiaries in 2016. It describes trends in number of Medicare Advantage plans, plan premiums, and plan quality ratings, including changes in prescription drug coverage and limits on out-of-pocket expenses. This spotlight is part of a series of spotlights tracking key changes in the Medicare Advantage program.

It Pays to Shop: Variation in Out-of-Pocket Costs for Medicare Part D Enrollees in 2016

This analysis focuses on out-of-pocket drug costs for Medicare Part D enrollees in 2016 for specialty, brand, and generic drugs. Part D drug plans differ considerably in the drugs they list on their formularies, their use of formulary tiers, and the level and structure of cost sharing applied to those tiers. Plan decisions affect different beneficiaries in different ways, depending on the drugs they use. The financial consequences for Part D plan enrollees can be substantial. In addition to examining costs for common drugs, we also examine profiles of multiple drugs for several hypothetical Part D enrollees.

Although a Small Share of Medicare Part D Enrollees Take Specialty Drugs, A New Analysis Finds Those Who Do Can Face Thousands of Dollars in Out-of-Pocket Drug Costs Despite Plan Limits on Catastrophic Expenses

Some Medicare Part D enrollees can expect to pay thousands of dollars out-of-pocket for a single specialty drug in 2016, even though Part D plans provide substantial protection against catastrophic costs, according to a new analysis from the Kaiser Family Foundation. The findings illustrate how high prescription drug prices, one…

Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, and Medicare for All

In this column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman explores the differing positions of presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders on a single payer or Medicare-for-all health care system and whether Democratic voters consider it an important factor in the 2016 primaries.

Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, and Medicare for All

In his latest column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman explores the differing positions of presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders on a single payer or Medicare-for-all health care system and whether Democratic voters consider it an important factor in the 2016 primaries. All previous columns by…

What’s In and What’s Out? Medicare Advantage Market Entries and Exits for 2015

This Data Note examines the availability of plans nationwide and by state in 2015, and changes in plan availability since 2011. It documents the number and share of Medicare Advantage enrollees affected by plan withdrawals each year, the characteristics of plans that will be entering the market and characteristics of those exiting the market in 2015.

Medicare Part D: A First Look at Plan Offerings in 2015

This issue brief provides an overview of the Medicare Part D stand-alone prescription drug plan options available in 2015 and key changes from prior years. The analysis examines Part D plan availability, premiums, benefit design features, and low income subsidy plan availability.

As Medicare’s Open Enrollment Nears, New Analyses Highlight Key Changes in Medicare Advantage and Part D Plans for 2015

With Medicare’s 2015 open enrollment set to begin Oct. 15, two new analyses from the Kaiser Family Foundation find modest change in the total number of private Medicare Advantage plans available for 2015, and the fewest Part D prescription drug plans nationwide since the start of the drug benefit in 2006. As in previous years, changes in Medicare Advantage and Part D plan availability, premiums, cost-sharing and benefits could require some beneficiaries to find alternative coverage and lead others to pay more if they continue with their existing coverage.

The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation Headquarters: 2400 Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park, CA 94025 | Phone 650-854-9400
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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.