According to a newly released report from healthcare advisory services firm Avalere, Medicare Advantage plan offerings are anticipated to decline in 2014, due in part to payment reductions under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA).
The study reviewed information from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and found that available plans will drop over 5% from 2,664 in 2013 to 2,522 in 2014. More than 80% of counties in the Southern and Midwestern regions of the country will experience these reductions, as well as more than half of the counties in the Northeastern and Western regions.
Matt Eyles, executive vice president of Avalere, attributed this decline to the aftereffects of the healthcare reform law.
"The multitude of payment changes for MA plans under the ACA are taking root and starting to broadly impact the number and types of plans available in the market," said Eyles.
Eyles cited several other factors, such as payment cuts under the ACA, new medical loss ratio requirements for Medicare Advantage plans and new health insurer fees.