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Rate Notice



Download BMA's primer on the final rate notice here.

On April 4, 2016 the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the 2017 Medicare Advantage Final Rate Notice and Call Letter that can be viewed here. Below is a summary of the key issues Better Medicare Alliance (BMA) raised in response to the Advance Rate Notice, released in February, and the policies finalized in the Final Rate Notice.


Medicare Advantage (MA) employer plans, officially known as Employer-Group Waiver Plans (EGWPs), allow employers, governments, and labor unions to provide comprehensive MA coverage to their retirees. MA employer plans provide Medicare Part A and B benefits, as well as supplemental benefits. 

These plans offer benefits tailored to specific groups of retirees, which are then available wherever the beneficiary may live. Employer-sponsored MA plans have successfully enabled millions of retirees nationwide to maintain consistent benefits and contain costs for industries, governments, and beneficiaries. CMS is proposing to move from a bidding system to a fixed payment system for this retiree coverage. The new system would be based on a methodology that fails to capture the differences between plans sponsored by employers for groups of retirees and those offered to individuals.

Better Medicare Alliance submitted this comment letter to the recently released 2017 Advance Notice and Call Letter on behalf of our alliance of nurses, doctors, plans, employers, retiree organizations, and beneficiaries who support Medicare Advantage (MA).

Better Medicare Alliance (BMA) submits a letter to CMS Acting Administrator Andy Slavitt as the agency prepares to release the CY2017 Advance Notice.

Click here to read PDF of a letter sent to HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell on January 15, 2016 to protect Medicare Advantage from employer groups including Better Medicare Alliance ally partner organizations:

Better Medicare Alliance recommends that the Senate Finance Committee consider policymaking in Medicare Advantage to be subjective to regulatory guidance rather than sub-regulatory guidance, and that the announcement of STAR Ratings performance targets be prospective rather than retrospective.  

Better Medicare Alliance provides comments on the Advance Notice of Methodological Changes for Calendar Year (“CY”) 2016 for Medicare Advantage (“MA”) Capitation Rates, Part C and Part D Payment Policies and 2016 Call Letter.

Better Medicare Alliance sends letter on how the Medicare Advantage program is a leader in achieving the goals set by the Secretary of value-based payment systems that increase care coordination, improve population health and promote patient engagement.