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Medicare Advantage becoming increasingly attractive

Medicare | Jul 21, 2014

Medicare Advantage plans have shown to increase coordination in care for seniors. That's one reason more people are choosing this option.

According to a recent article by Forbes, 50 percent of new Medicare enrollees choose a Medicare Advantage plan with enrollment tripling in the last decade. In fact, there are now 16 million beneficiaries.

Why seniors are choosing Medicare Advantage
The Forbes article investigated why popularity was increasing for these plans. While there are variety of reasons, with these plans, shopping around is easier. Comparison tools are available for consumers, taking the confusion out of the shopping process.

Online tools have made assessing Medicare Advantage plans easier so people do not have to individually compare the prices of various insurance providers. As a result of this streamlined shopping process, those with a plan are keeping monthly premiums to a minimum. Kaiser Family Foundation research revealed that in 2013, beneficiaries paid average monthly premiums of just $49, and a majority of these plans included prescription drug coverage or Medicare Part D.

Providers are held accountable
Aside from the predicable costs of Medicare encouraging seniors to sign up, Forbes also noted that the structure of Medicare Advantage for providers forces them to provide comprehensive preventative services.

The article notes that Medicare Advantage creates incentives for providers to provide comprehensive services. Those who are satisfied with their Medicare Advantage services are more likely to keep their same plan the next year, so providers must offer a quality customer service.

Another critical benefit to Medicare Advantage is the Five-Star Quality Rating System. A nursing home, for example, will have been given a rating on health inspections, staff and quality measures. The scores will then be combined for an overall rating. This information allows individuals to make a more informed decision when choosing where they want care.