Medicare Advantage Plans

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According to the article, Health insurer stocks slip over possible Medicare Advantage payment cuts, after a bad week at the stocks it may lead to Medicare Advantage Payment cuts in 2014. That could lead to reduced coverage or fewer buying plans for persons 65 years and older, the disabled and people who have end-stage renal disease. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said after markets closed “costs per person for Medicare Advantage plans to fall more than 2 percent in 2014, a bigger drop than many analysts who cover the industry anticipated” (Associated Press, 2013). Medicare Advantage plans could see payment reductions topping 5 percent, considering they are also facing cuts from the health care reform and from steep federal budget cuts known as sequestration that are slated to start in March (Associated Press, 2013). Medicare Advantage plans are a key source of growth for insurers. It allows Medicare to offer basic coverage topped with vision or dental coverage, or offer premiums lower than standard Medicare Rates (Associated Press, 2013). The Advantage plans help cuts costs and negotiate reimbursement with providers to help keep costs down.

A Medicare Advantage Plan is a type of Medicare health plan offered by a private company that contracts with Medicare to provide the citizen with all their Part A and Part B benefits. Medicare Advantage Plans include Health Maintenance Organizations, Preferred Provider Organizations, Private Fee-for-Service Plans, Special Needs Plans, and Medicare Medical Savings Account Plans. If enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan, Medicare services are covered through the plan and aren’t paid for under Original Medicare (Medicare.gov, n.d.). Under each plan there are different coverages. For example under a PPO you pay less for use of doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers that belong in your plan’s network. If you choose to go elsewhere you’ll pay a larger premium. With an HMO, you can’t get your health...
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