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Medicare Advantage Demo to Use Financial Incentives to Boost Quality

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, November 15, 2010

"The five-star rating system helps people with Medicare make meaningful distinctions between high-performing and low-performing health plans. They also allow plan sponsors to see how they compare to other plans and encourage them to improve care and customer service, so their plans are more attractive to Medicare beneficiaries," said CMS Administrator Donald M. Berwick, MD. "The demonstration rewards high performers more than low performers, creating an incentive for all performers to improve."

CMS also announced on Friday that it has proposed regulations to implement several provisions of the Affordable Care Act in improve Medicare and Medicare Advantage prescription drug programs. They include codifying clarifications to CMS authority to negotiate plan bids, expanding restrictions on charging higher cost-sharing than traditional Medicare for certain services, and limiting long-term care pharmacy waste by specifying efficient dispensing practices.

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