Impact of Medicare Advantage Plan Concentration on Choices and Competition in Rural Areas

Research center:
Lead researcher:
Project funded:
September 2007
Project completed:
August 2008
This project explores the availability and enrollment in Medicare Advantage (MA) plans in rural areas, as compared to urban areas, in the U.S. and explores whether the concentration of enrollment in a few plans, especially in rural areas, has implications for plan generosity and costs. Using measures of the concentration of plans from the economics literature, this project will explore the hypothesis that higher degrees of market concentration leads to less effective choice of plans, more market power, and less generous plans, and that this is more likely to occur in rural areas than in urban areas. This analysis will be completed using a set of data bases constructed by the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis for the purpose of analyzing Medicare. A set of papers and policy briefs will be prepared, describing not only the enrollment in rural areas in MA plans, but the results of the analysis described here.


  • State Updates on Medicare Advantage Enrollment
    RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis
    Date: 12/2007
    This list contains reports for each state with the number of persons enrolled in Medicare Advantage and prepaid plans in December 2005 and September 2007 in rural and urban areas.
  • Update on Rural Enrollment in Medicare Advantage: Growth Continues
    Policy Brief
    RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis
    Date: 10/2007
    This policy brief provides findings about rural enrollment in the Medicare Advantage program and other prepaid plans, with state and national data.