MedPAC panel proposes Part D performance evaluation

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Medicare Part D lacks sufficient measures with which to evaluate adequate beneficiary access to needed medications, according to a panel of healthcare plan experts who testified before the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission.

MedPAC staff responded by issuing two draft proposals designed to better evaluate performance goals and access, and to ensure that pertinent information concerning drug alternatives is relayed to pharmacists when Part D rejects a prescription.

Experts could not reach a consensus on how best to evaluate access. One initiative proposed by MedPAC would measure access in terms of whether or not beneficiaries experience unnecessary delays in receiving medication, though according to notes taken from the meeting last week, "no one had a clear idea on how to do this."  

"Better communication between plans, physicians and pharmacists has the potential to increase beneficiary access and lower administrative costs," the panel concluded.