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CMS Names Medicare Advantage Plan Stars

Margaret Dick Tocknell, for HealthLeaders Media, October 17, 2012

Just in time for open enrollment season, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has released its annual star ratings for Medicare Advantage, Medicare Cost, and prescription drug plans.

The five-year-old program is an effort to steer Medicare members to high performing plans that meet a checklist of quality and accountability standards. The ultimate goal is to lower the cost of Medicare services.

Plans are ranked with one (poor) to 5 (excellent) stars depending on their performance on 49 measures, including cancer and cholesterol screenings, glaucoma testing, controlling blood pressure, diabetes care, rheumatoid arthritis control, kidney disease control, hospital readmissions, and customer service.

The ratings are based on reviews of billing information, member surveys, and Medicare's regular monitoring activities.

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