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More Medicare Advantage Enrollees Slide Away: Deft

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Medicare enrollees may have been slightly more likely to slide away from their Medicare supplement (Medigap) insurance policies this fall, and noticeably more likely to slide away from their Medicare Advantage plans.

Analysts at Deft Research have reported data on consumer stickiness in a new summary of results from the firm’s latest Medicare shopping and switching study.

(Related: Much Consumer Interest in Medicare Advantage Is Soft: Deft)

The firm based the report on a summary of results from a survey of about 1,600 people with Medigap coverage, and about 1,600 with the Medicare Advantage coverage.

The firm looked to see what the consumers did during the latest Medicare annual enrollment period, which ran from Oct. 15 through Dec. 7.

For Medigap users, the switching rate inched up to 7% for 2019 coverage, from 6% for 2018 coverage.

The rate has been 6% and 7% since 2016, and the 1 percentage point increase is not considered statistically significant, according to Deft.

The Medigap switching rate ranged from 11% to 14% from 2012 through 2015.

For Medicare Advantage, the switching rate increased to 14% for 2019, from 11% for 2018.

But the 2018 Medicare Advantage switching rate was unusually low; the switching rate for Medicare Advantage enrollees was 14% for 2017, and switching rate was over 20% from 2012 through 2015.

Deft releases small slices of data to promote the main shopping report. The full report includes data on trends in shopping, switching, enrollment channel usage, and insurance agent involvement.


Information about how to get the Deft Research Medicare plan switching study is available here.

— Read 3 New Medicare Plan Shopper Secrets, on ThinkAdvisor.

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