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Blog: AHIP cheers release of Medicare health, drug plan ratings

America's Health Insurance Plans on Friday had reason to celebrate after HHS released the 2013 quality ratings for Medicare's health and drug plans.

“Currently, 37% of Medicare Advantage beneficiaries are enrolled in a plan with four or more stars, an increase from 24% in 2011,” Karen Ignagni, president and CEO at AHIP, said in an e-mail. “This increase is indicative of the commitment by Medicare Advantage plans to advance new and innovative strategies to improve healthcare quality and health outcomes.”

The quality ratings are based on a scale of one to five, with five reflecting “excellent” performance. Starting next year, people with Medicare will have access to 127 Medicare Advantage plans that earned either a four or five-star rating and currently serve 37% of Medicare Advantage enrollees, up from 106 plans in 2012 that served 28% of enrollees, according to the new statistics from HHS. Meanwhile, people with Medicare next year will have access to 26 prescription drug plans with four- or five-star ratings that serve about 18% of enrollees, compared with 13 plans that received those ratings and served 9% of enrollees in 2012.

HHS also reported that the average estimated premium for the basic Medicare prescription drug plan is expected to remain at about $30 for next year.

To see how the plans were rated, click here.

What do you think of the quality rating program, and what concerns do you have about Medicare Advantage or the prescription drug plan? Let me know: jzigmond@modernhealthcare.com.

You can follow Jessica on Twitter @MHJZigmond.

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