News Briefs: HHS Looks to Improve MA Transparency by Gathering Consumer Data

As part of new actions to lower health care and prescription drug costs by promoting competition, the Biden administration on Dec. 7 said it aims to further improve Medicare Advantage transparency. Noting that the MA program now serves roughly half of Medicare-eligible beneficiaries, the Biden administration in a fact sheet said it is committed to ensuring that MA plans “best meet the needs of people with Medicare, there is timely access to care, and the market has healthy competition.” Therefore, early next year HHS will solicit from the public “programmatic data” to better understand “the effects of market shifts on consumers and care outcomes.” When asked during a Dec. 6 press call for more details on this effort, a senior administration official responded: “We’ll be seeking additional information that will allow the agency to explore new policies and learn more about this really important program for seniors and people with disabilities.” Additionally, the administration said it will build on recent steps “[c]racking down on anticompetitive and anti-consumer practices” in MA and continue to implement updates to MA payment “that improve payment accuracy, address gaming, and recover overpayments.”

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Lauren Flynn Kelly

Lauren Flynn Kelly Managing Editor, Radar on Medicare Advantage

Lauren has been covering health business issues since the early 2000s and specializes in in-depth reporting on Medicare Advantage, managed Medicaid and Medicare Part D. She also possesses a deep understanding of the complex world of pharmacy benefit management, having written AIS Health’s Radar on Drug Benefits from 2004 to 2005 and again from 2011 to 2016. In addition to her role as managing editor of Radar on Medicare Advantage, she oversees AIS Health’s publications and manages the health editorial staff. She graduated from Vassar College with a B.A. in English.

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