Medicare Advantage

News & Analysis as of

A&B Healthcare Week in Review

I. REGULATIONS, NOTICES, & GUIDANCE - On May 6, 2016, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued an interim final rule entitled, “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Amendments to Special...more

CMS Finalizes Major Reforms of Medicaid/CHIP Managed Care Rules

On May 6, 2016, CMS is publishing a final rule to update Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) managed care regulations to more closely align with Medicare Advantage (MA) and private health plan standards,...more

MA Changes Shift Funding and Add Uncertainty to Already Complex Payment Methodologies

In Depth - The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has enacted significant changes to Medicare Advantage (MA) payment methodologies that will shift payment towards MA organizations (MAOs) enrolling significant...more

CMS publishes final Medicaid managed care rule

On April 25, 2016, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released its long-awaited Medicaid managed care Final Rule, the first update to Medicaid managed care regulations since 2002, and implements dozens of...more

CMS Issues Final 2017 Medicare Advantage Capitation Rates and Medicare Advantage/Part D Payment Policies

CMS has issued its final 2017 Medicare Advantage (MA) and Part D Rate Announcement and Call Letter, which includes a series of policy and payment changes related to these programs. CMS estimates that the final policies will...more

Washington Healthcare Update

This Week: MedPAC votes on changes in Part D... Senate HELP Committee reports five “Cures” bills... One report shows uninsured number decreasing... Another says, but we still need the safety net. ...more

Blog: Washington Update: Senate proceeds towards “Cures”; CMS releases MA rates and Call Letter

Health care policy issues continue to stream out of Congress and the Administration. The Senate held a markup of various health bills as part of its effort to produce a companion to the House of Representatives-passed 21st...more

A&B Healthcare Week in Review

I. REGULATIONS, NOTICES, & GUIDANCE - On April 4, 2016, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued the Final Calendar Year (CY) 2017 Medicare Advantage Capitation Rates and Medicare Advantage (MA) and...more

Health Care Congressional Outlook for the Spring Word Period

The next work period basically runs from April 4 to May 27, with both chambers adjourning for a week long recess the week of May 2. Following this work period, there will be five weeks left on the legislative calendar before...more

CMS Seeks Input on Medicare’s Value-Based Insurance Design Model

Last week, CMS asked Medicare Advantage Organizations for feedback on the Medicare Advantage Value-Based Insurance Design model test that will begin on January 1, 2017....more

MedPAC Releases Annual Recommendations to Congress on Medicare Policy

The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) has released its annual recommendations to Congress on Medicare policies, including Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) payment updates and a status report on the Medicare...more

CMS Changes Policy Related to Medicare Advantage Plan Star Ratings and Sanctions

In a brief memorandum dated March 8, 2016 (available here), CMS announced the suspension of its policy providing for automatic reduction of star ratings for Medicare Advantage plans operating under a CMS-imposed intermediate...more

Your Right to Refills If Medicare Drops Coverage of Your Drugs

Medicare prescription drug plans can change which drugs they cover, leaving you without coverage for a drug you need. Or you may switch plans into a plan that doesn't cover your medication. In these circumstances, Medicare...more

CMS Releases 2017 Advance Notice and Draft Call Letter

Last week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released its 2017 Advance Rate Notice and draft Call Letter (“2017 Draft Call Letter”) for the Medicare Advantage (“MA”) and Part D programs. With the final 2017...more

CMS Proposes Rate, Policy Updates for Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plans

CMS has issued its draft 2017 Medicare Advantage (MA) and Part D Advance Notice and Draft Call Letter, which includes a variety of proposed policy changes and rate updates related to these programs. CMS estimates that the...more

Significant Telehealth Expansion Proposed in Bipartisan Senate Bill

Earlier this month, a bipartisan group, led by U.S. Senator Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), introduced a bill in the Senate focused on promoting cost savings and quality care under the Medicare program through the use of telehealth...more

CMS Proposes Modest Increases to Medicare Advantage and Part D Plan Payment Rates Accompanied by Significant Revisions to Risk...

The Advance Notice (“Advance Notice”) of Methodological Changes for Calendar Year (“CY”) 2017 for Medicare Advantage (“MA”) Capitation Rates, Part C and Part D Payment Policies and 2017 Call Letter was released by the Centers...more

Court Rules Hospitals Must Exhaust HHS Administrative Appeals Process for Medicare Advantage Out-of-Network Payment Dispute

According to a Georgia federal district court ruling issued on February 11, 2016, a group of hospitals must exhaust their out-of-network Medicare Advantage (MA) payment dispute through the Department of Health and Human...more

Opioids, FDA and Medicare Advantage Spending on the List for Congress

As Congress is back to Washington for its next work period, ML Strategies has published an Advisory outlining health care issues on the radar for the upcoming weeks. Highlights include: legislative initiatives on opioid...more

Bipartisan Bill to Expand Telehealth Services for Medicare Patients

On February 3, 2016, Senators Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), John Thune (R-S.D.), and Mark Warner (D-Va.) introduced a bipartisan bill that would expand telehealth...more

Strategizing to Operationalize the Medicare Advantage and Part D Final Rule

More than a year ago, the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed significant regulatory changes to the Medicare Advantage (MA) and Part D Programs, many of which were the subject of significant...more

President Obama’s Proposed Fiscal Year 2017 Budget Would Establish Competitive Bidding in Medicare Advantage Plans, Reduce...

On February 9, 2016 the Obama administration released its proposed fiscal year (FY) 2017 budget. The budget, which would top $4 trillion, allocates nearly $1 trillion to CMS. This is an increase of $26 billion from the FY...more

Washington Healthcare Update

This Week: The House and Senate were out for Presidents’ Day recess... The Senate to vote on FDA Commissioner nominee Califf after 5:30 today... Medicare Advantage rates announced....more

CMS Proposes to Raise Net Payment Rates for Medicare Advantage Plans

On February 19, 2016, CMS proposed to raise net payment rates for Medicare Advantage plans by 1.35 percent for 2017. That would translate to a 3.55 percent increase in revenue for MA plans next year once risk coding...more

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