The ‘What’s Covered’ app for mobile devices lets Medicare enrollees, caregivers and others see whether Medicare covers a specific medical item or service.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has launched a new “What’s Covered” app that allows Original Medicare enrollees and caregivers using mobile devices to determine coverage for specific medical items or services.
“eMedicare is one of several initiatives focused on modernizing Medicare and empowering patients with information they need to get the best value from their Medicare coverage,” CMS Administrator Seema Verma said in a media release.
“This new app is the next in a suite of products designed to give consumers more access and control over their Medicare information,” she said.
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In addition, CMS is using Blue Button 2.0 to enable enrollees to connect their claims data to applications and tools developed by private-sector companies to help them understand, use, and share their health data, Verma said.
Verma said the new techology is responding to increased demands on Medicare. The Medicare population is projected to increase almost 50% by 2030—from 54 million in 2015 to more than 80 million in 2030. In 2016, two-thirds of Medicare beneficiaries said they use the Internet daily or almost daily.
Medicare.gov gets about 15 million page views each year for coverage related content, and 1-800 MEDICARE gets more than 3 million coverage-related calls each year.
CMS launched eMedicare in 2018 to allow enrollees to more-easily access cost and quality information.
Other tools in the eMedicare suite include:
- Enhanced interactive online decision support to help people better understand and evaluate coverage options and costs between Medicare and Medicare Advantage.
- An online service that lets people quickly see how different coverage choices will affect their estimated out-of-pocket costs.
- Price transparency tools that let consumers compare the national average costs of certain procedures between settings, so people can see what they’ll pay for procedures done in a hospital outpatient department versus an ambulatory surgical center.
- A webchat option in the Medicare Plan Finder.
- Easy-to-use surveys across Medicare.gov so consumers can continue to tell us what they want.
Date: February 6, 2019