Leavitt Partners Releases “Multi-Year Medicare Advantage Plans: A Framework for Action” White Paper

Salt Lake City, March 20, 2019—Today, Leavitt Partners released “Multi-Year Medicare Advantage Plans: A Framework for Action.” This white paper proposes a Multi-Year Medicare Advantage Plan (MyMap) demonstration project to remove barriers to a value-based health insurance products, improve health outcomes for Medicare beneficiaries, and reduce the cost of care. The white paper is authored by Michael O. Leavitt, Former Utah Governor and U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary, Kerry Weems, Former Acting Administrator, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and Former Deputy Assistant Secretary for Budget, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and Josh Trent, Former Chief Counsel for Health, Committee on Energy and Commerce, U.S. House of Representatives.

The white paper notes how single-year insurance contracts can sometimes incentivize insurers to forego costly up-front investments that can improve beneficiaries’ health in the long term. Piloting a program with insurance contracts of three or more years could improve care quality and coordination, improve chronic disease prevention and management, reduce costly care utilization, and yield greater stability for patients, payers, and suppliers alike.

Kerry Weems, former Acting Administrator of CMS notes, “Medicare Advantage is the best setting in which to pilot a multi-year insurance contract because the patient population is generally well-studied and the program has a long record of high patient satisfaction.”

Key takeaways from this proposal include:

  1. Multi-year Medicare Advantage contracts would help insurers better prevent and manage chronic conditions by allowing up-front interventions in patients’ health to bring health benefits over a long-term horizon.
  2. Medicare Advantage health plans could better address non-clinical contributors to health status such as food insecurity or a lack of reliable transportation when they have longer than one year to realize a return on those investments.
  3. Multi-year contract design would encourage health care providers and suppliers to engage in greater risk and value-based contracting by incentivizing accelerated data sharing and care coordination.

The paper offers a framework outlining potential issues and design features to consider for a MyMap demonstration, including benefit design, target populations, risk strategies, and value-based contracting arrangements arising from a multi-year insurance contract. The authors outline the potential of CMS adopting a national model implemented through regional alliances of providers, beneficiaries, insurers, and other stakeholders based on the unique characteristics of each region’s health sector and patient characteristics. “With such an opportunity to help so many beneficiaries,” Governor Mike Leavitt states, “the time to start is now.”

The white paper can be viewed here.

About Leavitt Partners:

Leavitt Partners is a health care intelligence business. The firm helps clients successfully navigate the evolving role of value in health care by informing, advising, and convening industry leaders on value market analytics, alternative payment models, federal strategies, insurance market insights, and alliances. Through its family of businesses, the firm provides investment support, data and analytics, member-based alliances, and direct services to clients to support decision-making strategies in the value economy. For more information please visit