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Most Medicare beneficiaries think Medicare won't be available for their children, HealthMine finds

Respondents also showed concern about the security of their medical information, and their plan's ability to help them avoid scams.

Jeff Lagasse, Associate Editor

A survey of 781 Medicare Advantage plan beneficiaries found 63 percent of respondents are concerned about whether Medicare coverage will be available throughout their lifetimes. And 69 percent believe that Medicare won't be available for their children throughout their lifetimes.

IMPACT

The responses show wavering confidence in the stability of coverage from their health plans, which is not good news for insurers.

Thirty-four percent said they were "very confident" that their coverage was stable; 49 percent had some confidence; and 13 percent were not too confident, while 4 percent had no confidence at all in the stability of their coverage.

Respondents were also concerned about their medical information security, and the plan's ability to help them avoid Medicare scams. Just 17 percent were "very confident" regarding the security of digital medical information, and 21 percent were "not too confident," while 11 percent had "no confidence."

Most respondents did not have complete confidence that their insurer would help them avoid Medicare scams, with 44 percent saying they were "not sure," and 24 percent responded they had "no confidence."

The remaining 32 percent said their plans made them feel confident that they would avoid Medicare scams. Only 5 percent of respondents said they had been victimized in a Medicare scam, while 72 percent responded that they were educated about them.

The survey questioned 781 insured consumers over the age of 65 who had a chronic condition, who were enrolled in a Medicare Advantage and/or supplemental plan.

THE TREND

Medicare Advantage from private insurers is the plan of choice for about a third of all Medicare beneficiaries and that number is expected to grow to 36 percent next year.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has been promoting the benefits and lower premiums of MA plans as opposed to traditional Medicare.

Insurers also like the Medicare Advantage business and more have joined to offer plans.

This contradicts consumer expectations of an instability from their MA plan. 

ON THE RECORD

"While 'Medicare for All' is in the news, these results may indicate that confidence in Medicare is wavering," said Bryce Williams, president and CEO of HealthMine. "It underscores that continuous changes in healthcare can fuel consumer uncertainty.

"However, Medicare Advantage plans are driving value-based care. And value-based care is the opportunity for plans to double down on their commitment to beneficiaries by providing highly individualized guidance to help them achieve better health."

Twitter: @JELagasse
Email the writer: jeff.lagasse@himssmedia.com

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