An eHealth analysis found a 16% increase of Medicare customers choosing Medicare Advantage plans during the 2021 annual enrollment period compared to last year.
Medicare Advantage plan selections increased 16% in the 2021 annual enrollment period (AEP) compared to last year, according to an eHealth report released Tuesday.
The analysis found that during the 2021 AEP, 77% of eHealth's Medicare customers chose Medicare Advantage plans, a 16% increase from the 61% of eHealth Medicare customers who selected such plans in the 2020 AEP.
According to eHealth CEO Scott Flanders, the increasing popularity of Medicare Advantage is “one of the best illustrations of successful private/public cooperation in the health care sector today."
"Over the years, competition and innovation among private insurers offering Medicare Advantage plans has brought down average premiums while increasing benefits, and enthusiastic beneficiaries are responding by enrolling in ever greater numbers, as our Medicare Index Report shows,” he stated in a press release.
While popularity has increased in Medicare Advantage plans, the average premiums have decreased 71% since 2018, according to eHealth.
The average monthly cost for 2021 Medicare Advantage plans was $5, due to an "increased enrollment in $0 premium plans."
The report also found 86% of eHealth customers chose Medicare Advantage plans with a $0 monthly premium, a 23% increase from 2018. This marked a continued increase in consumers choosing plans with $0 monthly premiums.
In 2019, 73% of customers chose plans with a $0 monthly premium; in 2018, 63% of customers chose plans with a $0 monthly premium.
Melanie Blackman is the strategy editor at HealthLeaders, an HCPro brand.