CMS Issues New Policies for MA and Part D Plans

Last week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a final rule for the Medicare Advantage (MA) and Part D prescription drug programs. The final rule makes a number of changes, including rural-relevant provisions to support network adequacy. Network adequacy standards, and requirements for health plans’ provider networks, can support access to care in rural areas. In this rule, CMS is requiring that MA applicants demonstrate they have a sufficient network of contracted providers to care for beneficiaries before CMS will approve an application for a new or expanded MA contract.