Proliferation of $0 Premium PPOs, Supplemental Benefits Drive Continued MA Switching

A new report from Deft Research finds that switching among Medicare Advantage members during the recent Annual Election Period (AEP) was steady at 13%, compared with last year’s rate of 14% after switching among MA members hit a low of 11% in 2018. Meanwhile, the Medicare Supplemental market saw an increase in switching from 7% in 2019 to 9% during the 2020 AEP. In an Executive Research Brief highlighting data from the 2020 Medicare Shopping and Switching Study, Deft observed that the rise of $0 premium PPO plans and expanding supplemental benefits are two likely drivers of MA switching. Although the MA market is still dominated by $0 HMO plans, more than 300,000 seniors moved into $0 PPO options that were newly available for 2020, observed Deft.

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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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