In Tucson and Pima County, competition is fierce among the four major players in the Medicare Advantage market. Medicare Advantage is popular among Pima County seniors, with 45% being enrolled in these private plans.
CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) released the latest numbers on Medicare Advantage enrollment, and here’s what it looks like in Pima County. I have not listed every plan, just the ones with the biggest enrollment. I have not listed PPO plans, which have fairly small enrollment numbers. All of the plans below are HMO plans with a network of providers, though two of these plans have some local out-of-network options.
|AARP Medicare Complete||19,980||22,004||-9%|
|AARP Medicare Complete Plus||14,952||13,282||+13%|
|SCAN HEALTH PLAN||167||148||+13%|
CareMore is only in its third year in Tucson, but its enrollment is growing fast, mostly by getting people to change from other Advantage plans. I can’t go into details here, lest someone think I’m promoting these plans. I’m just reporting the numbers.
Health Net had over 19,000 member three years ago. Then they became the first Tucson HMO to charge a premium, which led thousands of their members to move to other plans with $0 premium.
SCAN was supposed to be a new competitor in the Tucson market in 2012, but they seem to have put the brakes on building their provider network here. They say they made a decision to concentrate on their operations in Phoenix where they have 12,688 members and a large network of providers.
AARP Medicare Complete plans are actually UnitedHealthcare plans. The AARP Medicare Complete is the old Pacificare plan and has been around for a long time. The AARP Medicare Complete Plus plan is known to providers as the “United plan” and has a different contract.
The enrollment numbers come from CMS and can be found at https://www.cms.gov/MCRAdvPartDEnrolData/MCESR/list.asp#TopOfPage.