An annual study of health care quality suggests a new payment system under the federal health care overhaul is improving care for seniors enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans.
About a third of all Minnesota Medicare beneficiaries are enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans, which are run by private sector firms. The federal health care law requires Medicare to make higher payments to participating health plans that perform better on certain quality measures.
The National Committee for Quality Assurance study found improvements in measures such as cancer screening and controlling high blood pressure, but saw the biggest gains in obesity screening.
Critics say the improvements have been too small to prove the pay for performance system is making a difference.