The Medicare Advantage program was introduced by the Medicare Modernization Act 2003. This array of plans help seniors and those people with a disability to have health insurance from separate insurance companies. These Medicare Advantage plans are supposed to have the same benefits that Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B offer. Medicare Part A takes care of hospital expenses and Medicare Part B takes care of physician visits and medical tests. Some Medicare Advantage plans will also cover prescription drugs. They may also be known as Medicare Part C. The Medicare Advantage plans cover Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B and also Medicare Part D. Medicare Advantage plans have become very popular and about 25% of Medicare recipients have enrolled in them. From the first time they were offered, Medicare Advantage plans have doubled their recipients and are increasing every year. Recipients of Medicare Advantage plans have been able to expand on the traditional Medicare benefits. Since Medicare advantage plans started, there has been much discussion about the quality of care a senior would get.
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Medicare Advantage plans have shown to offer higher quality of care according to Niall Brennan, the acting director of the Office of Policy for Medicare and Medicaid services and Mark Sheppard of economics at Harvard University likened to Medicare fee for service plans for health care facility and the health care one receives from physicians. Medicare Advantage plans came into fruition years ago and Brennan and Shepard took 11 measurements to determine the underuse of effective care. Medicare Advantage plans were seen to be better than fee for service plans in 9 of the instances. Not just important to health care, only a few of the fee for service plans were better. Another study by the America’s Health Insurance Plans using Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set measurements showed good improvements for those who had diabetes and heart disease who had the Medicare Advantage plan. There were less hospital readmissions for diabetics and less days spent in the hospital of those who had Medicare Advantage plans than those who had fee for service Medicare. One needs to look carefully at all the Medicare plans available. There is so much to consider and what you may wish to have your plan cover. You can go on the Medicare.gov website to see what plans are offered and what medical issues will be taken care of.