Duals, Minorities Were Hardest Hit by COVID Among Medicare Beneficiaries, CMS Reports

In a preliminary analysis of fee-for-service Medicare claims and Medicare Advantage encounter data from Jan. 1, 2020, to July 24, 2021, CMS reported more than 4.6 million COVID-19 cases and 1.3 million related hospitalizations among all 63.1 million Medicare beneficiaries. Cases per 100,000 lives varied significantly by state, with Louisiana, Mississippi, New Jersey and New York seeing the highest rates. COVID-related hospitalizations were more prevalent among Medicare-Medicaid dual eligibles, particularly those who identify as Black or Hispanic. Medicare has paid $18.9 billion for fee-for-service COVID hospitalizations, as of July 24, 2021.

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Jinghong Chen

Jinghong Chen Reporter

Jinghong has been producing infographics and data stories on employer-sponsored insurance, public health insurance programs and prescription drug coverage for AIS Health’s Health Plan Weekly and Radar on Drug Benefits since 2018. She also manages AIS Health’s annual executive compensation database for top insurers and Blue Cross and Blue Shield affiliates. Before joining AIS Health, she interned at WBEZ, Al Jazeera English and The New York Times Chinese. She graduated from Missouri School of Journalism with a focus on data journalism and international reporting.

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