Good News For Local Health Insurers

The National Committee for Quality Assurance rates, HealthNow New York, Independent Health Association, and Univera Healthcare among the “higher performing” health plans in the state and nation when it comes to private commercial health insurance and also Medicare coverage. The NCQA nationally rates 498 commercial, 386 Medicare and 178 Medicaid health plans.

NCQA is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving health care quality.”NCQA ratings are a tool that employers and consumers can use to make informed choices when selecting a health plan,” said Univera Healthcare spokesman Peter Kates.  “Ratings reflect a health plan’s performance in clinical quality, member experience, and accreditation standards.” Univera rated 4.5 stars for its Medicare HMO.

Medicare uses information from member satisfaction surveys, plans, and health care providers to give overall performance star ratings to Medicare health and prescription drug plans. These ratings help consumers compare plans based on quality and performance. A plan can get a rating from one to five stars. For plans covering health and prescription drug services, the overall score covers a variety of topics in the following categories:

– Staying Healthy
– Managing Chronic (long-term) conditions
– Ratings of health plan responsiveness and care
– Health plan member complaints and appeals
– Health plan telephone customer services
– Drug plan customer service
– Drug plan member complaints and Medicare audit findings
– Member experience with drug plan
– Drug pricing and patient safety

The NCQA nationally rates 498 commercial, 386 Medicare and 178 Medicaid health plans, including 20 commercial, 30 Medicare and 7 Medicaid plans from New York state. Link to NCQA ratings of New York state health insurers: