Slowing Medicare spending by optimizing late-life needs

NEJM Catalyst

In this article, we highlight three care delivery innovations that could be implemented by Medicare Advantage plans as a late-life care model to better meet the needs of older adults and reduce per capita spending. The elements of this model include (1) community (engaging well-functioning seniors as in-home health workers), (2) capability (improving seniors’ functional capabilities and home environments), and (3) communication (using telemediated behavioral health specialists to help patients articulate their health care goals). We propose that these solutions fall within the scope of the recently expanded Medicare Advantage supplemental benefits, and we estimate that the new care model would offer substantial annual savings for the Medicare Advantage population and individual plans.

Rinaldo F, Altman M, Cannon K, et al. Slowing Medicare Spending by Optimizing Late-Life Needs. NEJM Catalyst; July-August 2020. Available online.

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