Analyses Related to Medicare Advantage and Part D Contract Star Ratings

Female doctor showing a tablet to a male patient in exam room, photo by Hero Images/Getty Images

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) contracted with RAND to provide analyses to support Medicare Advantage (MA) and Part D Contract Star Ratings. Under this contract, RAND is:

  • conducting analyses to further enhance the Star Ratings system
  • assisting with the annual calculation of MA and Part D Contract Star Ratings.

As part of this work, RAND has performed simulations and other analyses to examine and improve the Star Ratings methodology, such as:

  • established methods for encouraging the stability of measure thresholds
  • evaluated variation and trends in performance and reliability of measures
  • developed methods to adjust for the effects of social risk factors on performance calculated stratified performance scores for patient subgroups
  • developed measures of quality of care for disadvantaged patients.

Technical Expert Panel

RAND convened a Technical Expert Panel (TEP) to gather input on analyses that could be conducted to further enhance the MA and Part D Star Ratings program. The TEP met from 2018 through 2022 and was composed of a diverse group of individuals with expertise across a wide range of disciplines including quality measurement, risk adjustment, statistical methods, and delivery of health care to Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in MA and Part D plans. Summaries of all TEP meetings and presentations shared with the TEP are available under the Meeting Materials section of this webpage.

The TEP did not replace existing CMS mechanisms to obtain broad stakeholder input regarding enhancements to the Star Ratings program, namely the annual Advance Notice/Rate Announcement and rulemaking processes.

Selected Publications

RAND produced several publications resulting from analyses it has conducted in support of this project.

Contact Us

For questions about the Analysis Related to Medicare Advantage and Part D Contract Star Ratings project, please email star-ratings-analyses@rand.org.