Stars, drugs, elections and rate cuts will top insurers’ agenda
On the eve of the 2015 open enrollment period for Medicare beneficiaries, insurance leaders will gather in Washington to discuss public healthcare programs.
A primary focus of the conference, sponsored by America’s Health Insurance Plans, will be how health plans can boost their star ratings for the Medicare Advantage program. Only Advantage plans that receive at least four stars in the quality rating system are eligible for bonus payments starting in 2015.
On Tuesday, Chris Jennings, a top healthcare policy adviser in the Obama and Clinton administrations, will share the podium with Dr. Avik Roy, a Forbes columnist and senior fellow at the conservative Manhattan Institute, to discuss the potential impact of healthcare issues on the 2014 congressional elections. Roy recently issued a widely noted healthcare reform proposal that would use many Obamacare features as a platform for the conservative goals of enhancing market competition and reducing federal spending, gradually raising the Medicare eligibility age to 75 and shifting most Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries to the exchanges.
High drug prices also will be a major topic. AHIP has been jousting with drugmakers for months over drug costs, particularly the hepatitis C drug Sovaldi. Former CMS Administrator Dr. Mark McClellan will be among the panelists discussing that topic on Wednesday.