MA Supplemental Benefit Toolkit Now Available

Center for Managed Care | October 22, 2019 | by Nicole Fallon

LeadingAge has created a new Medicare Advantage Supplemental Benefits toolkit to help guide members through understanding how these supplemental benefits work, assessing the activity in each member’s market, evaluating the opportunity and which plans to approach, and providing a template for telling your story to the Medicare Advantage (MA) plans about the benefits of the services you provide in terms the plans understand.

The Toolkit includes:

  • Medicare Advantage Engagement Strategy Checklist;
  • Medicare Advantage Supplemental Benefits Explained;
  • Medicare Advantage Plan Engagement Tips;
  • A Step-by-Step Guide for Evaluating Medicare Advantage Activity in Your Market;
  • Telling Your Story template.

The Toolkit also highlights existing Center for Managed Care Solutions resources helpful to all members such as an updated Glossary of Terms and Acronyms and other contracting resources.

Federal policy changes made it possible for MA plans to offer new supplemental benefits that include some limited home and community based services (HCBS) and special supplemental benefits for the chronically ill (SSBCI) not previously paid for under Medicare. While all MA plans do not offer HCBS or SSBCI benefits, some plans do include them and others may add these options in the future. 

HCBS providers should start by assessing whether plans in their area are already offering their services as part of the plan’s supplemental benefit offerings. If so, this might be a good time to introduce your organization to these plans and explore being one of their network providers for that service. If the area plans don’t offer these benefits today but the provider is interested in exploring this option, the toolkit will also help you think through how to make your case to the plan to include these benefits in a future plan year. While the opportunity may be limited at present, it is expected to grow over time with more plans offering a broader array of supplemental benefits each year. Therefore, now is a good time to at least understand how these benefits work and prepare for a future conversation.

The MA Supplemental Benefits Toolkit is the latest offering in the Center for Managed Care Solutions and Innovations.  Members are also encouraged to join the LeadingAge Managed Care listserv to get the latest news on managed care, alternative payment models and integrated service delivery issues.  To join, access your profile on and select Managed Care listserv under Subscriptions.

For those attending the LeadingAge Annual Meeting in San Diego, Session#118- E: Preparing for HCBS and Other Supplemental Benefits Under Medicare Advantage on Tuesday, October 29 at 8 a.m. will include a walk through of the MA Supplemental Benefits Toolkit and how members can use it; and hear from both an HCBS provider and MA plan about how they are thinking about this new opportunity.