WASHINGTON BUREAU — The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has ordered all Medicare Advantage providers to “suspend” what it says are potentially misleading mailings to beneficiaries about health care and insurance reform.
Officials at America’s Health Insurance Plans, Washington, are calling the CMS order a “gag order.”
Jonathan Blum, acting director of the CMS’ Center for Drug and Health Plan Choices, says CMS have issued the order in response to beneficiary mailings sent by Humana Inc., Louisville, Ky.
Humana warned in the mailings that health reform legislation now before Congress could eliminate the Medicare Advantage program.
Humana has agreed to suspend the mailings, Blum says in a statement.
“We are concerned that the materials Humana sent to our beneficiaries may violate Medicare rules by appearing to contain Medicare Advantage and prescription drug benefit information, which must be submitted to CMS for review,” Blum says.