Each year, Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage plans are evaluated by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) using a battery of quality indicators. CMS assigns a star rating, from five (good) to one (poor), to each plan (poor).
Based on a mountain of evidence. Medicare uses enrollee surveys, complaints, spot checks by investigators, and the accuracy of price lists, among other data points, to determine plan quality and assign ratings. Each plan is given an overall star rating as well as several category-specific star ratings:
- As many as twelve quality indicators, including customer service and member satisfaction, are used to evaluate Medicare Part D prescription programs.
- There are 12 main categories that are used to evaluate Medicare Drug-included Advantage plans, with up to 28 additional performance indicators to consider things like the proportion of eligible members who obtain specific health tests and the quality of care delivered to those with certain chronic diseases.
- Those 28 metrics are all that are used to evaluate Medicare Advantage plans that don’t include prescription medication coverage.What’s the use of checking a plan’s star rating? Star ratings are useful for comparing different plans’ customer service and ability to handle care for chronic conditions. Medicare Plan Finder lets you compare Part D and Medicare Advantage plans in your area and provides detailed information about each plan, including its star rating and breakdown of categories.
What do Medicare star ratings measure?
In order to get the overall star rating, Medicare Advantage plans are evaluated in five key areas:
1. Exams, testing, and immunizations. The fraction of women and men who are eligible for cancer screenings and annual flu shots who actually take advantage of them.
2. Taking care of persistent illnesses. How well a plan addresses the needs of those who have conditions that require ongoing treatment, such as diabetes and osteoporosis.
Thrive as a member, according to member feedback. How simple it is to make an appointment, to visit a specialist, and to get care swiftly are all factors that members use to evaluate the quality of their health plan.
4. Plan performance and member concerns. The rate at which plan participants complain or drop out.
5. Service to the customer Services in other languages or for the hearing impaired, as well as the quickness with which an appeals decision is made by the plan, and the fairness of that decision based on an independent assessment.
Prescription drug coverage plans for Medicare. These areas are used to assign a star rating to Medicare supplement plans and Medicare Advantage plans that include prescription medication coverage.
The number one priority is the satisfaction of the customer. Services for the deaf and hard of hearing, include the use of teletypewriters and the provision of interpreters in other languages.
2) Complaints from the membership. The rate at which participants opt out of the programme.
Thrive as a member, according to member feedback. Participants are satisfied with the drug plan and the convenience of obtaining prescriptions filled.
To ensure proper price and drug safety, fourth. How many members had a health professional help them understand and manage their drugs, how many members had trouble finding accurate price information on a plan’s website, and how many members took particular medications as advised for chronic diseases.
Where do I find a plan’s star ratings?
Visit the Medicare Plan Finder, enter your information, filter the results by Star Ratings, select the desired amount of stars, and hit the Apply button to get star ratings for plans in your area. Selecting only the five-star options available in your area is an option. You will either see a list of plans that have that rating or a notice that no plans with that rating are available in your location.
Plans that have received a perfect score of five stars will have a star icon next to their names. If you call 800-MEDICARE (800-633-4227) or get in touch with your state’s health insurance help line, you’ll locate five-star plans (SHIP).
Do star ratings affect when I can enroll in a plan?
Yes. If a Medicare Advantage or Part D prescription plan in your area gets an overall five-star rating, you can switch to it at any time, not just during the annual open enrollment period (Oct. 15–Dec. 7). A five-star special enrollment period is any time of year that allows you to switch to that plan. After the plan receives your enrollment request, coverage will begin on the first of the next month.
You have around 14 months to switch plans if your current one has a rating of less than three stars for the preceding three years. Members of these plans are often notified by Medicare around the last week of October that they have the rest of the year to make the transition.
Keep in mind
When deciding between Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage plans, it is important to evaluate many factors beyond the star ratings.
Evaluate your options for prescription coverage and pricing. Find out if the doctors and hospitals you choose are included in the Medicare Advantage plan’s network, and if the coverage you need is available.