Eighty Medicare Advantage Allies Urge Administration to Protect Medicare Advantage Ahead of CMS Advance Notice Release
New letter urges the administration to protect Medicare Advantage more than 29 million Medicare Advantage beneficiaries who depend on it every day
WASHINGTON – Eighty Better Medicare Alliance (BMA) Allies, including community-based organizations, providers, health plans, aging service organizations, and beneficiary advocates at the national and state level, are urging the administration to protect their Medicare Advantage coverage ahead of the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicare Services’ (CMS) upcoming advance notice announcement.
The Better Medicare Alliance is the nation’s leading research and advocacy organization supporting Medicare Advantage. BMA Allies of the organization highlighted the importance of Medicare Advantage’s holistic approach to providing high-quality care for more than 29 million seniors and people with disabilities, citing a resounding 94% satisfaction rating among beneficiaries and substantial cost savings as compared with fee-for-service Medicare.
“Medicare Advantage is a vital part of the Medicare program that provides high-quality, affordable health care to more than 29 million seniors and Americans with disabilities, while improving health equity and providing substantial cost savings especially important for beneficiaries on fixed incomes and from communities of color,” said BMA President and CEO Mary Beth Donahue. “BMA joins dozens of Medicare Advantage Allies in urging Congress and the administration to safeguard the affordability and valuable benefits Medicare Advantage provides beneficiaries, including vision, hearing, dental, and in-home clinical assessments that can improve health outcomes.”
Key stakeholders joined the BMA Ally letter to the administration to highlight the critical need to “protect seniors’ access to affordable, high-quality coverage options and meet the ever-evolving needs of beneficiaries to deliver a healthier future for tens of millions of older adults and those with disabilities through a strong, stable, and vibrant Medicare Advantage.”
“CMS must continue to uphold the lifelines provided by Medicare Advantage, including lifesaving care coordination, disease management programs, out-of-pocket spending limits, access to community-based programs, and additional supplemental benefits that the program is known for,” said John Skelton, owner of Senior Helpers of Tempe, a BMA ally.“The focus on providing seniors with a more holistic approach to care has led to improved health outcomes, including 43% fewer avoidable hospitalizations as compared to traditional Medicare. We’re counting on CMS to do the right thing for tens of millions of Americans.”
“Medicare Advantage beneficiaries depend on the continued access to high-quality services provided through the program, especially among minority communities who benefit from the cost savings compared with traditional Medicare,” said Diego Trujillo with Las Vegas Heals, a BMA ally. “We’re eager to work with CMS and the Administration to protect these lifesaving benefits and continue to strengthen the program for many years to come.”
Medicare Advantage supports an increasingly diverse beneficiary population with varied health and socioeconomic needs, offering crucial cost savings for underserved populations. The letter cites recent data from the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey, which found Medicare Advantage beneficiaries save nearly $2,000 per year on total health expenditures compared to those in fee-for-service Medicare.
The letter also calls on policymakers and regulators to continue to support Medicare Advantage for the beneficiaries who depend on it, citing an October 2021 analysis by Milliman that found the program’s cost savings “suggest that overall Medicare Advantage offers significant value to the federal government.” That same Milliman analysis found that “the federal government pays less and gets more for its dollar in Medicare Advantage than in [fee-for-service Medicare].”
The number of beneficiaries actively choosing Medicare Advantage has doubled over the last decade. Today, more than 29 million Americans – roughly half of Medicare beneficiaries – choose Medicare Advantage.
A copy of the letter co-signed by 80 BMA allies can be found HERE.