CMS offers a special enrollment period for members who want to switch to a 5-star plan when there is a 5-star plan available in their service area.

In 2017, there are 5-star PDP plans available in 12 states, as well as 5-star advantage plans available in 261 counties across 18 states. Medicare patients can switch to a 5-star plan once outside of Open Enrollment.  

If a patient is unsatisfied with their current plan, this is a great opportunity to help them explore their options.

As described on the Medicare website:
Medicare uses information from member satisfaction surveys, plans, and health care providers to give overall performance star ratings to plans. A plan can get a rating between 1 and 5 stars. A 5-star rating is considered excellent. These ratings help you compare plans based on quality and performance. Medicare updates these ratings each fall for the following year. These ratings can change each year.

There are 5-star PDP plans in the following states in 2017: 

Connecticut
Blue MedicareRx Value Plus S2893-01
Blue MedicareRx Premier S2893-003

Iowa
MedicareBlue Rx Standard S5743-001
MedicareBlue Rx Premier S5743-004

Massachusetts
Blue MedicareRx Value Plus S2893-01
Blue MedicareRx Premier S2893-003

Michigan
Prescription Blue Option A S5584-001
Prescription Blue Option B  S5584-002

Minnesota
MedicareBlue Rx Standard S5743-001
MedicareBlue Rx Premier S5743-004

Montana
MedicareBlue Rx Standard S5743-001
MedicareBlue Rx Premier S5743-004

Nebraska
MedicareBlue Rx Standard S5743-001
MedicareBlue Rx Premier S5743-004

North Dakota
MedicareBlue Rx Standard S5743-001
MedicareBlue Rx Premier S5743-004

Rhode Island
Blue MedicareRx Value Plus S2893-01
Blue MedicareRx Premier S2893-003

South Dakota
MedicareBlue Rx Standard S5743-001
MedicareBlue Rx Premier S5743-004

Vermont
Blue MedicareRx Value Plus S2893-01
Blue MedicareRx Premier S2893-003

Wyoming
MedicareBlue Rx Standard S5743-001
MedicareBlue Rx Premier S5743-004

You can find a full list of 5-star Medicare Advantage plans and which counties they are offered in here.

What's Next?

In addition to explaining that 5-star means better performance and customer service, check out our article on how to consult with patients about their plan options here.

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