Better Medicare Alliance Statement on Senate Finance Committee Report on Medicare Advantage Marketing
Alliance calls on CMS to increase direct oversight of third-party marketing organizations
Washington, D.C. – Better Medicare Alliance, the nation’s leading research and advocacy organization supporting Medicare Advantage, responded today to a Senate Finance Committee majority staff report on Medicare Advantage marketing.
“Every senior deserves clear, accurate information that empowers them to be active choosers about their Medicare options and we commend the Senate Finance Committee’s efforts to this end,” said Mary Beth Donahue, President and CEO of the Better Medicare Alliance. “We strongly agree with the report’s recommendation that CMS use its enforcement authority to hold bad actors accountable and we welcome increased direct oversight of third-party marketing organizations, whose activities are currently regulated differently from the marketing conducted by health plans. Medicare Advantage health plans’ marketing communications today are subject to a clear set of guidelines, including requiring approval from CMS. If outlier third-party marketing entities fail to maintain the high standard of accuracy and trust that Medicare beneficiaries deserve, those entities should face serious consequences.”
Medicare Advantage plans’ marketing communications are heavily regulated and subject to CMS approval; a process that is governed separately from third-party marketing organizations’ (TPMOs) communications
- Medicare Advantage plans must follow a more-than-50-page list of federal guidelines for all marketing materials.
- Health plans’ marketing communications must be filed with and approved by CMS.
- TPMOs, which are separate from Medicare Advantage plans, are defined by CMS as organizations or individuals “compensated to perform lead generation, marketing, sales, and enrollment related functions as a part of the chain of enrollment.”
- Better Medicare Alliance expressed strong support for additional safeguards on TPMOs’ marketing practices in its comment letter on CMS’s 2023 Medicare Advantage proposed rule.