BMA Event

Event Recap: Medicare Advantage 101: A Primer Briefing

April 17, 2019
Better Medicare Alliance (BMA) hosted a Congressional briefing outlining the basics of Medicare Advantage: how it works, enrollment trends, comparisons to Traditional Fee-for-Service Medicare, emerging policy issues, and innovation currently taking place within Medicare Advantage. Attendees gained a solid foundation for engaging on Medicare Advantage policy.
James Michel, BMA Director of Policy & Research, provided an overview of Medicare Advantage including type of plans, enrollment, demographics, and access. He also discussed payment, quality measurements and oversight in Medicare Advantage.
The briefing included a panel discussion moderated by Allyson Y. Schwartz, BMA President & CEO. Panelists talked about key issues in Medicare Advantage and how policymakers help in the modernization of Medicare. Chet Speed, Vice President of Public Policy for AMGA, talked about how Medicare Advantage is incentivizing patients and plans. Speed emphasized that many providers are moving to Medicare Advantage because patients are.
Jane Gilbert, Director of Retiree Health Care for Teachers’ Retirement System of the State of Kentucky, said the savings from Medicare Advantage will help the system but warned against policy proposals such as eliminating current Medicare drug rebates that could hinder success. Gilbert also discussed legislative concerns for seniors on Medicare Advantage, such as the Health Insurance Tax.
Griffin Myers, Co-Founder & Chief Medical Officer of Oak Street Health, emphasized the lack of education to Medicare-eligible seniors about their choices. He mentioned the number one reason people do not enroll in Medicare Advantage was because they didn’t know about the option. Dr. Myers mentioned the need to get the Medicare & You handbook in more languages than just English and Spanish.
During Q&A, attendees raised questions pertaining to the urban housing crisis impact on seniors. Panelists mentioned companies like UnitedHealth Group and Kaiser Permanente exploring how to address housing issues for enrollees. Panelists also discussed ways to lower prescription drug costs for beneficiaries. Lastly, panelists discussed the expansion of supplemental benefits, focusing on preventative measures, and improving Medicare Advantage education for seniors.
Download PowerPoint presentation here.
View full video here.
Find State and Congressional District enrollment data here.
Sign On letter on language access is here.
Congressional Open Enrollment Guide is here.


Briefing fact sheets below:
Congresswoman Allyson Y. Schwartz
President & CEO, BMA
James Michel
Director of Policy & Research, BMA
Jane Gilbert, CPA
Director of Retiree Health Care
Teachers’ Retirement System of the State of Kentucky
Griffin Myers, M.D.
Co-Founder & Chief Medical Officer
Oak Street Health
Chet Speed, J.D., LL.M.
Chief Policy Officer
American Medical Group