January 20, 2022
President and CEO Ceci Connolly breaks down recent Medicare Advantage fact sheets created by ACHP.
By Ceci Connolly, ACHP President and CEO
Medicare Advantage (MA) enrollment has reached an all-time high of nearly 28 million Americans, continuing a decade-long trend of growth.
At the Alliance of Community Health Plans (ACHP), we’ve been longtime fans of MA. The program offers seniors more benefits, lower costs and high-quality, coordinated care. Combined with a commitment to value-based payment models and innovation in coverage and care, it’s easy to understand why we continue to support this popular program.
As some in Washington evaluate the value of MA, we are here to provide the facts.
ACHP has produced a series of fact sheets showing how and where MA beats traditional Medicare on choice, diversity, savings, quality and outcomes.
We’ve seen MA in action in the communities our members serve — and it’s no shock that 98 percent of MA enrollees stay in the program from one year to the next: higher standards lead to higher quality coverage. Enrollees enjoy greater transparency and superior consumer experience — all at a lower price.
These fact sheets are chock full of noteworthy tidbits, but here’s a highlight for me: Despite misleading attacks on the MA program, the reality is that seniors have made up their mind, and they’re choosing MA. Over the past 8 years, MA has grown by more than 68 percent and serves a diverse population with the majority of Hispanic American seniors and nearly half of all Black seniors.
As George Halvorson lays out in a new article for Health Affairs, MA outperforms fee-for-service Medicare beyond question. Without sacrificing quality, MA enrollees spend almost $1,600 less a year on out-of-pocket costs. 60 percent of those in the MA program also pay no premium — driving significant savings for the majority of seniors enrolled in MA with annual incomes of less than $30,000.
Unlike fee-for-service Medicare, MA is the only government health program that measures and rewards high-quality, efficient and coordinated care. Rated on a 5-star quality scale, 89 percent of all MA enrollees were in plans rated 4 stars or higher in 2022.
But nowhere is this high-quality coverage and care more evident than in health outcomes. Greater investment in preventive care — before enrollees get sick — has led to a 57 percent lower rate of avoidable hospitalizations than for those in fee-for-service. It’s this focus on quality over volume of care — combined with high customer satisfaction and better health outcomes — that makes MA the choice of America’s seniors.
ACHP and its members believe innovation has driven MA’s success, and we look forward to continuing to improve the program to serve the next generation of seniors.
Check out our new shareable fact sheets here to learn the facts and support this growing and critical program for America’s seniors.
Learn more about ACHP’s MA advocacy efforts and how Washington can strengthen and protect MA benefits.