• Medicare Advantage Plans and Home Care in 2020

    MA plans are an alternative to traditional Medicare, encompassing inpatient, outpatient, and prescription drug benefits. In 2018, CMS announced that MA plans would expand to cover home-based services as well. The new plans include several new services that are available to millions of MA plan members. Since their introduction in 2010, MA plans have become increasingly popular among Medicare recipients, and the additions planned for 2020 will likely add to this enthusiasm.

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  • Medicare Advantage’s Supplemental Benefits

    As the healthcare climate pivots from fee-for-service to value-based payment models, Medicare Advantage benefits are expanding to include a broader scope of offerings. Insurers are slowly realizing that the value of offering these benefits is far greater than paying for treatment costs, including time spent in high-cost, acute care facilities, once a patient’s illness becomes more severe.

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    5 Highlights from 2019 in Healthcare: The Forest for the Trees

    When looking back on 2019’s healthcare news stories, the famous expression regarding the forest for the trees comes to mind. Remembering the distinction between the two is important, as focusing too much on the healthcare headlines of the day may result in missing the bigger picture.

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    Power Outages and Care at Home

    On November 21, 2019, California’s major power utility, Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) announced that its latest round of systematized power outages had concluded and they would begin restoring power to the (more than 40,000) Northern California residents who had been without power for the duration of the week. For thousands of Californians, the outages were more than just a mere inconvenience, and for many, being unable to access electricity is a matter of life and death.

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  • Medicare Advantage and Hospice Care

    In January 2019, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced an expansion of its “value-based insurance design” (VBID) model for Medicare Advantage (MA) plans. With the industry moving away from fee-for-service models and towards fee-for-value arrangements, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) has advocated for the addition of carved-in hospice benefits to Medicare Advantage plans, including a test of this offering, starting in 2021.

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