This week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the final Medicare Advantage and Part D 2019 Rate Announcement and Call Letter. This is the finalized annual update to Medicare Advantage and Part D programs, which includes payment updates and policy changes for calendar year (CY) 2019. CMS also released a preview and fact sheet of the Final Rule Implementing Policy and Technical Changes to Part C and Part D for CY 2019, which will be formally published at a later date.
Notable changes for the 2019 plan year include:
Together with the changes in the proposed rule, this Rate Announcement and Call Letter provides for increased plan flexibility and reduced oversight. As Medicare Rights outlined in our comments to both draft documents, this flexibility will require increased understanding, vigilance, and research by beneficiaries as they choose and utilize coverage through Medicare Advantage Plans.