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Press Release

Kaiser Permanente Southern California Medicare Rated No. 1 in the U.S.

National Committee for Quality Assurance ranks all eight Kaiser Permanente regions among the top health plans in the nation

September 19, 2013



2013 - 2014 NCQA Medicare badge over woman physician explaining papers to older man

PASADENA, Calif. — Kaiser Permanente Southern California’s Medicare Plan has again been ranked No. 1 in the nation by the National Committee on Quality Assurance for consumer satisfaction, prevention services and clinical treatment outcomes.

“The NCQA survey highlights two very important measures: The quality of care we provide our members and the satisfaction our members feel about the care they receive,” said Benjamin Chu, MD, MPH, MACP, group president for Kaiser Permanente Southern California and Kaiser Permanente Hawaii. “We have our electronic medical record system, our leading-edge technology and our chronic disease management programs and most importantly, we have clinicians and staff who are passionate about improving the health of our members and the communities we serve.”

NCQA 2013 - 2014 Top Medicare Plans badge

“Being named by NCQA as the No. 1 top ranking Medicare health plan in the nation for the second year in a row is a tremendous acknowledgement of our focus on our members,” said Edward M. Ellison, MD, executive medical director of the Southern California Permanente Medical Group. “Our integrated health care model allows physicians, nurses and staff to work as a care team, giving their best every day to help members reach their full health potential. Putting patients at the center of high-quality care delivery is how we are leading the way to the future of health care in America.”

All eight Kaiser Permanente regions rated in the top 4 percent of the 405 Medicare programs and in the top 6 percent of the 484 commercial plans that were rated by NCQA in the 2013 survey.

NCQA logo

The NCQA, established in 1990, is a private, not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving health-care quality. Its surveys are among the most comprehensive and widely respected in the nation, and cover a wide range of clinical and service measures, including women’s reproductive health, immunizations and cancer screenings, as well as clinical treatment measures for the management of chronic conditions like diabetes, heart disease, hypertension and osteoporosis.

The 2013 NCQA health-plan rankings (www.ncqa.org/rankings) and methodology will be posted on the Consumer Reports website and will be included in the magazine’s November issue.

“Best Value” is a new designation from NCQA, being added to the rankings for the first time. The information is supplemental and does not affect overall rankings of health plans. It is based on “Relative Resource Use” data, NCQA’s way of looking at care for a specific chronic condition. Many health plans in the nation, including Kaiser Permanente Southern California, did not collect or report this data and therefore are not eligible for that designation. This may be misleading to consumers.

Kaiser Permanente is exploring opportunities to discuss with NCQA alternative measures reflecting value for consideration in future versions of the health plan ranking, and will also continue to examine the feasibility and appropriateness of collecting Relative Resource Use data in those regions that were unable to do so for the 2013 rankings.

About Kaiser Permanente Southern California
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America’s leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, our mission is to provide high quality, affordable health care services to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve more than 3.6 million members in Southern California. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal physicians, specialists and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education and the support of community health. For more information, go to: share.kp.org.