October 1, 2019, marks the beginning of a new era for Mary Washington Healthcare
and the Mary Washington Health Alliance. For on this day, we will begin
marketing our own health plan: Mary Washington Medicare Advantage (MWMA).
This is an HMO-type plan for Medicare beneficiaries offering many advantages
over traditional Medicare FFS. These include zero-added premium, prescription
drug coverage, vision, hearing and dental benefits and a cap on annual
out-of-pocket spend. Based on the generous plan design, low cost and the
fact that the Alliance physicians are designated as the in-network providers,
this product will be very competitive with other Medicare Advantage (MA)
plans in our market. Because of this and the fact that MA penetration
in our region is relatively low (11% compared to the national average
of 31%), we are looking forward to a successful roll-out of this plan
during this year’s Annual Enrollment Period (AEP). Individuals eligible
for Medicare will be able to sign up with MWMA between October 15th and December 7th.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
- There will be an aggressive marketing campaign designed to educate our
Medicare-age and soon-to-be-Medicare-age individuals in our service area.
Obviously, they need to be aware of the existence of this plan before
they can sign up with it. Once your patients find out about it, they will
be asking you about MWMA. While you can’t actively promote the plan
over competing plans, you can say things like: “Our practice does
participate in this plan and I encourage you to find out more about it”
or “I think that this would be a good plan for you”.
- Cooperate with our marketing team, allowing them to place educational materials
about the MWMA plan in your office.
- Become familiar with the options your patients will have to find out more
about MWMA so you can direct them to those resources (the toll free number
they can call (855-919-0826), the MWMA website (MWMAplan.com,) the insurance
brokers they can meet with and the schedule of educational events in our
COME JANUARY 2020
Starting on Thursday January 2, 2020, patients will be registering at your
office check-in areas with their new MWMA insurance cards. Please reward
their loyalty and trust in our new health plan with exemplary service.
Be especially attentive to coding appropriately, closing gaps in preventative
care and providing timely access to your services when requested. As this
is our very own health plan, our patients, our providers, our network
and our community all stand to benefit from this new commitment to delivering
high quality, cost-effective care to our Medicare population. Details
as to how our success in this new program can impact physician distributions
will be forthcoming. As this is our own health plan without any intermediary,
monitoring of performance will be closer to real-time and performance
will be more closely related to compensation than ever before. So, provide
your best care and stay tuned.