Medicare Plans Show Robust Enrollment Growth for 2024

Driven by solid gains during last fall’s annual enrollment period, we are reporting significant membership growth in 2024 for its Medicare Advantage plan, EasyCare; its Medicare dual-special needs plan, EasyCare Plus; and VNS Health Total, its integrated Medicare-Medicaid plan. EasyCare saw a 34% increase in members coming into the current year, while EasyCare Plus expanded its membership by 60% and Total’s enrollment grew by 25%.

“Within our categories of health plans, we had some of the strongest enrollment results in the entire downstate market, and that’s continuing through the rest of the first quarter,” says John Burke, EVP and chief of Health Plans.

David Robinson, VP for Health Plans Sales and Partnership Development, credits the plans’ strong performance to a number of factors, including the high quality of the plans themselves and an active marketing presence. In particular, he points to the plans’ benefit packages, which are carefully crafted to meet the needs of New Yorkers in the lower income ranges.

“We have some of the best benefits in the market, especially when it comes to supplemental benefits, and we’re seeing the market respond to that,” Robinson says. “We really try to care for the whole member, not just the medical component. Our over-the-counter pharmacy and grocery benefits, for example, are substantial. This allows our plan members to fill in the gaps from a social determinants of health perspective — including food insecurity needs that may not be covered through their SNAP benefits. We also offer a flex utility benefit that helps members cover some of their monthly gas and electric bills.”

In addition, notes Robinson, “We continue to grow our physician network, including adding providers serving New York’s Chinese and South Asian communities, which has helped drive people’s decisions to join our plans. We’re now hiring additional staff with similar cultural backgrounds to serve members of these communities, and we look forward to maintaining and growing those neighborhood connections.”