Medicare Advantage: CMS touts reduced premiums, increased access

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Friday, September 25, 2020

WASHINGTON – The Medicare Advantage average monthly plan premium is expected to decrease 11% to $21 in 2021, CMS has announced. 

Since 2017, the average monthly plan premium has decreased 34.2%, according to the agency, saving beneficiaries nearly $1.5 billion in costs. 

“This is the lowest that the average monthly premium for a Medicare Advantage plan has been since 2007,” CMS state. “In some states, including Alabama, Nevada, Michigan and Kentucky, beneficiaries will see average premium decreases of more than 50% since 2017.” 

Medicare Advantage continues to be popular, CMS says, with enrollment projected to increase to an all-time high of 26.9 million beneficiaries from current enrollment of 24.4 million. The projected enrollment for 2021 represents a 44% increase in Medicare Advantage enrollment since 2017. 

CMS has also announced that, for the first time, seniors who use insulin will have more than 1,600 Medicare Advantage and Part D prescription drug plans to choose from that will offer insulin at no more than a $35 monthly co-pay beginning in January. 

Additionally, benefits for 2021 include more than 94% of Medicare Advantage plans offering additional telehealth benefits reaching 20.7 million beneficiaries, up from about 58% of plans in 2020.