The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced its 2024 quality ratings, and again this year recognized Excellus BlueCross BlueShield for its Medicare Advantage plans. This is the 11th consecutive year the health plan has ranked above average or higher for its Medicare Advantage plans for member satisfaction and quality performance in clinical care. Recognition from CMS comes in the form of Medicare Star ratings.
CMS awarded the Excellus BCBS Medicare Advantage PPO plan 4.5 out of 5 stars, the Medicare Part D prescription drug plan 4.5 stars out of 5 stars, and the Medicare HMO plan 4 stars out of 5 stars.
“When CMS recognizes the performance of our Medicare Advantage Plans, it’s really recognizing the local commitment and service our employees provide to our members,” says physician Ankit Garg, vice president of medical affairs at Excellus BCBS. “We are grateful to have members who are satisfied with our health plan and recognize the dedication and hard work our people provide every day.”
Medicare Stars reflect member satisfaction with the health plan and its providers. They also recognize its success in caring for its members by meeting specific health care benchmarks, including how a Medicare member’s chronic conditions are being managed; if Medicare members are receiving their preventive screenings and vaccines; and how the health plan is helping members to take their medications as prescribed.
For example, Excellus BCBS clinical pharmacists reach out to members to conduct comprehensive reviews of their prescriptions to assure they are taking the right medications in the right dose, at the right time, and in the right way. The pharmacists also help identify opportunities to reduce out-of-pocket spending on prescription medications, such as finding opportunities to save by switching from a brand-name drug to an equally effective and lower cost generic alternative.
“The Medicare stars are a sign of our shared commitment with local health care providers to deliver high quality, and affordable care to our Medicare members,” says Garg.