The Better Medicare Alliance is a research group in the United States that supports private health insurance coverage for Medicare recipients through Medicare Advantage plans. Aetna, Humana, and United Healthcare fund the 501©(4) group. Please continue to read below and learn more about the Better Medicare Alliance’s work.
Better Medicare Alliance: Who are they?
The Better Medicare Alliance is a group of experts who supports Medicare Advantage. It’s a non-profit organization that helps to promote federal policies that help to promote Medicare Advantage from within the Medicare program.
Medicare Advantage Advocacy
Medicare Advantage policies are offered through private health care plans instead of through the federal government, such as Original Medicare. These Part C plans generally cover all that Original Medicare covers but charge only one monthly premium for its services, as opposed to Original Medicare, in which beneficiaries pay separate monthly premiums for outpatient visits, hospital visits, and prescription medications. And in many cases, Medicare Advantage plans are often less expensive.
Insurance companies involved
UnitedHealth, Aetna, and Humana are some of the most popular insurance companies in the Better Medicare Alliance. The Better Medicare Alliance has more than 100 organizations involved. In addition to the previously-mentioned insurance companies involved with the Better Medicare Alliance, the following companies are also involved:
- BlueCross BlueShield
- Kaiser Permanente
- And more
The Center of Medicare Advantage Innovation
The Center of Medicare Advantage Innovation is a sister organization to the Better Medicare Alliance, and aims to offer evidence of the cost-efficiency, quality, and care offered to Medicare recipients by working as closely as possible with the Better Medicare Alliance. The organization helps to identify reasonable recommendations to improve health care coverage and health care as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Better Medicare Alliance’s key concerns and issues
The Better Medicare Alliance focuses on a plethora of critical concerns and issues. These include addressing rising costs of health care services, especially prescription medications. The alliance also works to improve coordination between patients and their healthcare providers while working to ensure access to high-quality healthcare for Medicare recipients in rural locations and with severe and complicated health conditions.
The Better Medicare Alliance works to advocate for individuals with disabilities, as well as seniors, to ensure they’re well-protected against Covid-19. The BMA helped support increased telehealth services and virtual health care so Medicare recipients can still get proper health care at home. Overall, the BMA aims to make healthcare more accessible during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Racial disparities in healthcare
The Better Medicare Alliance focuses on the racial disparities in the healthcare system. One of the organization’s goals is to provide the proper healthcare equality tools.
The rebate rule is a rule that essentially bans rebates that are used for lowering the final costs of medication from the list provided by drug manufacturers. The rule could raise Part D premiums by over 19 percent within the first year and more than 25 percent in the decade following. The BMA has helped to postpone the rebate rule and has secured a significant delay thus far. The goal of postponing this rule is to help keep prescription medication costs low for seniors and those who are disabled.
Telehealth services help to improve healthcare access for Medicare beneficiaries. In the aftermath of the pandemic, telehealth services help create an easy way to have doctor visits among those who need appointments but can’t risk exposure to Covid-19. According to the Better Medicare Alliance, 91 percent of seniors with a Medicare Advantage plan use telehealth services and report these services to be positive and beneficial.
Improving the Medicare enrollment process
The BMA strives to help improve the Medicare enrollment process as well. They aim to create systems for streamlining the enrollment process and ensuring that all Medicare beneficiaries know Medicare Advantage plans and their benefits.
End-stage renal disease
The BMA strives to improve healthcare for those diagnosed with (End-Stage Renal Disease) ESRD. The BMA ensures accurate payments regarding ESRD care, ensuring these patients don’t have to go without critical healthcare services. By ensuring that Medicare beneficiaries don’t have to worry about inaccurate payments through Medicare, they can help protect beneficiaries from paying extra out-of-pocket costs and have more room to improve supplemental benefit coverage.
The Medicare Advantage program is based on a value-based system where Medicare Advantage policies get per-member and per-month payments for every beneficiary’s health care. The program must use the money cost-effectively while providing top-notch care within Medicare Advantage plans.
The Better Medicare Alliance strives to keep consumer costs as low as possible. They work to keep consumers’ costs down by advocating for policies that offer more stable and predictable funding for Medicare Advantage. They work to ensure that Medicare beneficiaries have access to coordinated and high-quality care and invest in preventative healthcare programs that help keep beneficiaries healthy and that can ultimately reduce overall healthcare spending.
Special needs plans
The BMA is a strong supporter of Special Needs Plans (SNPs). They advocate for policies that can help encourage the growth and expansion of SNPs. The Better Medicare Alliance feels that SNPs help address the unique healthcare needs of the most vulnerable while playing a pivotal role in providing value-based healthcare that helps reduce healthcare costs while improving health outcomes. Essentially, the BMA and SNPs work together to ensure that all Medicare Advantage plans, including SNPs, provide beneficiaries with coordinated and high-quality care to those suffering from chronic health conditions or disabilities to improve their
Health insurance tax
The Health Insurance Tax applies to individual policies, employers (except self-insured), Part D, Medicare Advantage, and small groups. Over 20% of this tax affects Part D and Medicare Advantage, raising monthly premiums. The BMA repealed the Health Insurance Tax in 2019, benefiting millions of seniors with reduced tax costs.
Benchmark Cap is an advisory firm that focuses on Medicaid and Medicare Advantage. Some of the services they provide include quality improvement, market analysis, and network optimization. They work directly with healthcare plans, government agencies, provider organizations, and stakeholders to help improve healthcare outcomes and services. Both Benchmark Cap and the BMA specialize in working with Medicare Advantage. Both organizations work to improve accessibility, affordability, and quality for Medicare recipients with Medicare Advantage.
What is the Better Medicare Alliance?
The Better Medicare Alliance is a group of plans, healthcare providers, advocates, and beneficiaries supporting Medicare Advantage plans through Medicare. The organization works to ensure the stability of the Medicare Advantage program through extensive research, education, and information.
Who funds the Better Medicare Alliance?
Many different companies help to fund the Better Medicare Alliance. Some of these companies include insurance companies such as Humana, UnitedHealthcare, and Aetna.
Who are members of the Better Medicare Alliance?
Members who make up the Better Medicare Alliance include advocacy groups, healthcare organizations, and providers. Some prominent members included CVS Health, Cigna, Amerigroup, and BlueCross BlueShield.
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