Cigna Expands MA Plans in Time for Premiums to be Lowered in 2022

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Cigna has expanded its Medicare Advantage plans for the third consecutive year in as Medicare Advantage premiums lower per month in 2022.

Cigna has expanded its Medicare Advantage (MA) plans for the third consecutive year in efforts to maintain affordability and continuing to offer benefits that meet the needs of Americans ages 65 and others who qualify for the program.

The expansion adds an additional 108 new counties, which includes areas in three new states: Connecticut, Oregon, and Washington.

Cigna has increased its geographic presence in MA by 80% since 2019. The company now offers plans in 477 counties across 26 states and the District of Columbia.

"Millions of Americans depend on Medicare for their physical and emotional well-being," Aparna Abburi, President of Cigna Medicare, said in a release. "Through geographic and product expansion, we're pleased to be able to provide these customers with the plan that best fits their personal health care needs, including their lifestyle, health and budget. We are committed to making customers' Medicare options easier to understand and access."

News of the expansion comes at a similar time as the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announces the average premium for MA plans will be lower in 2022 at $19 per month, compared to $21.22 in 2021.

During the 2022 Medicare Annual Election Period (AEP) period, Cigna customers will be offered comprehensive and affordable plans with benefits, such as at least one $0 premium MA plan available in every market. Most Cigna MA customers with a premium will pay the same or reduced premiums compared to last year, according to a release by Cigna.

Other benefits customers will receive are $0 copays for primary care, behavioral health, and physical therapy in a virtual setting.

Unique benefits designed specifically for seniors
Cigna is offering benefits to help meet the specific health needs of MA customers, including:

  • Social Connection Program: To help combat the loneliness epidemic among older adults, Cigna MA customers in some areas will have access to a partner who can help with instrumental activities of daily living, such as meal prep, transportation or chores, or just spend social time with the customer talking or watching a movie.
  • Affordable Diabetes Care: Cigna is adding the Senior Savings Model to a number of its MA plans for 2022. The program caps the price of insulin at $35 per month for customers in those plans regardless of their coverage phase.
  • Gift card to encourage preventive care: To help customers take better control of their health, Cigna MA plans offer an incentive for well visits, which is a gift card for customers who take advantage of a $0 copay annual wellness screening and physical examination, at an in-network doctor.

In addition to these benefits, Cigna will continue to offer meal delivery following a hospital discharge; transportation available in many plans to and from doctors' offices and pharmacies, including for vaccinations, such as the COVID-19 vaccine; and fitness benefits in most plans, including a home fitness kit and a fitness tracker.

In select Dual Special Needs Plans (DSNP), Cigna is offering customers a debit card they can use to pay for certain expenses. The card is replenished monthly and the maximum amount varies by plan. Select DSNP plans also offer $0 copays for all covered drugs to customers who qualify for any level of low-income subsidy.

According to CMS, enrollment in MA continues to increase. In 2022, it's projected to reach 29.5 million people compared to 26.9 million enrolled in an MA plan in 2021.

Medicare and Medicare Advantage open enrollment through all health plans begins on October 15 and ends on December 7.

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