The CMS report details the differences in health among Medicare Advantage members.

Black, First Nations, and Alaska Native patients experienced the most significant differences in clinical care among Medicare Advantage participants last year, according to a report from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and RAND Corp..

The CMS Office of Minority Health and a consulting company analyzed information from the Health Performance Data and Information Set (HEDIS) and Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Service Providers and Systems (CAHPS) for a study comparing clinical data and demographic patient satisfaction surveys.

Blacks, American Indians, and Alaska Natives ranked lowest on clinical scores, while Asian American and Pacific Islander beneficiaries reported the worst customer service experience, according to a report released Thursday.

Enrolled American Indians and Alaska Natives ranked lowest of any demographic for breast cancer screening, respiratory disease, and diabetes management.

Black participants were less likely to receive follow-up care after emergency room visits for mental and behavioral disorders than were other populations. report shows. These patients also experienced the most adverse drug prescribing practices: clinicians were more likely to prescribe drugs with significant side effects to blacks.

The researchers determined that gender parity in health care interventions was maintained across racial and ethnic groups, with the exception of black participants. Half of black men, compared with one-third of black women, scored below average on the 28 clinical measures included in HEDIS. Poor scores in diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and behavioral health among black men have led to gender disparities.

Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders enrolled in the Medicare Advantage program reported the worst patient experience and scored below average on six of the seven CAHPS measures. Differences in care scheduling and coordination were most significant.

Whites, American Indians, and Alaska Natives were within the national average for all seven measures of patient satisfaction. White people experienced the most manageable time, scheduling appointments and getting help quickly, while Hispanic participants reported the highest customer service satisfaction. Enrolled American Indians and those of different races were more likely to say that their doctors communicated well than people from other groups.

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