Seniors still need additional information about Medicare Advantage and Star Ratings.
Findings of a new poll of more than 1,200 seniors on Medicare demonstrate near-universal satisfaction with Medicare Advantage’s coverage (98%), provider networks (97%), and handling of the current health crisis (98%).
“This poll, fielded more than seven months into the COVID-19 pandemic, shows that when crisis struck, Medicare Advantage was ready,” Allyson Y. Schwartz, president and CEO of the Better Medicare Alliance said. “In a global healthcare emergency that has laid bare deep, persisting challenges in healthcare, we saw beneficiaries’ satisfaction with Medicare Advantage reach new heights.”
Still, nearly one-third of seniors on Medicare felt they did not have enough information about the option of Medicare Advantage and 57% were not familiar with the ‘Star Ratings’ system used by the government to grade Medicare Advantage plans on quality. And the 67% of seniors on Medicare Advantage familiar with the ‘Star Ratings’ system did not refer to it when selecting a plan.
With the increased use of telehealth services during the pandemic, the poll showed the percentage of seniors who use such platforms rose from 24% in May 2020 to 40% in December 2020. A majority of seniors (91%) had a favorable experience.
Most respondents (71%) on Medicare found the process of enrolling in coverage simple, but 29% still found it confusing. Additionally, 79% of seniors on Medicare were aware of differences between traditional Medicare, Medicare Advantage, and Medigap coverage. A majority of respondents (95%) said it was important to have a choice of plans other than traditional Medicare, including 64% who believed it was very important.
“The results of this poll depict a rapidly growing beneficiary population that is highly pleased with their health coverage and ready to take action to ensure it is protected,” Schwartz said.