Industry News

CMS Issues a Final Rule Outlining Changes to Medicare Part C and D Programs.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently issued a final rule implementing Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) provisions related to the Medicare Advantage (Part C) and Prescription Drug Benefit (Part D) programs. The final rule makes several changes to the Part C and D programs to clarify program participation requirements; strengthen beneficiary protections; and increase CMS’ ability to identify and handle weak program applicants. In addition, the final rule sets forth programmatic and operational changes to the Medicare Part C and D programs for contract year 2012. Once the final rule is fully implemented, CMS estimates a savings of $76 billion to the Medicare program from fiscal year 2011through 2016. The provisions in the final rule are effective June 6, 2011, unless otherwise specified within the final rule. The Final Rule is available at:

Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services 42 CFR Parts 417, 422 and 423 Medicare Program; Changes to the Medicare Advantage and the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit Programs for Contract Year 2012 and Other Changes. 76 Fed. 73, 21432, 21578. (Apr. 15, 2011).