2010 Medicare Survey Reveals Contractor Satisfaction Rate
The 2010 Medicare Contractor Provider Satisfaction Survey (MCPSS) results are in. The MCPSS offers Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) providers an opportunity to give the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) feedback on their satisfaction, attitudes, perceptions, and opinions about the services provided by their respective contractor. This year, 69 percent of providers stated they were satisfied or very satisfied with their contractor’s overall performance. Approximately 13 percent stated they were dissatisfied or very dissatisfied.
CMS distributed the 2010 survey to approximately 33,000 randomly selected providers, including physicians and other health care practitioners, suppliers, and institutional facilities that serve Medicare beneficiaries across the country.
A total of 18,458 providers out of 33,168 responded to the 2010 MCPSS compared to 17,074 out of 32,302 in 2009. The overall response rate for the 2010 administration of MCPSS was 55.7 percent. There was, however, a wide range of response rates for different types of providers. Physicians had the lowest response rate of 39.1 percent, while home health agencies had the highest response rate of 70.4 percent.
Survey questions, which were based on a new fully labeled rating scale of 1 to 5, “1” representing “very dissatisfied” and “5” representing “very satisfied,” focused on seven key business functions of the provider-contractor relationship: provider inquiries, provider outreach and education, claims processing, appeals, provider enrollment, medical review, and provider audit and reimbursement.
Note: A direct comparison to past survey results is not possible because, in 2010, the survey structure was changed from a 6-point rating scale to a 5-point rating scale. This scale change artificially causes all 2010 scores to appear lower than in previous years.
Principal Findings From the 2010 Survey
In 2010, based on data collected between January and May of 2010 by DataStat, Inc. of Ann Arbor, Mich., the overall satisfaction with fiscal intermediaries (FIs), Part A Medicare administrative contractors (MACs), regional home health intermediaries (RHHIs), and durable medical equipment (DME) MACs exceeded 75 percent and dissatisfaction was less than 11 percent. Satisfaction with carriers was nearly the same at 74 percent. Satisfaction with Part B MACs was notably lower at 67 percent and dissatisfaction was higher at almost 17 percent.
The mean MCPSS score was 3.80 when based on overall satisfaction and 3.66 when based on satisfaction by business function. Mean scores were highest for FIs (3.72) and lowest for Part B MACs (3.52). The highest score based on business function was 4.05 (RHHI Cahaba GBA). The lowest was 3.15 (Part B MAC Palmetto GBA).
The table below shows the distribution of overall provider satisfaction with contractor performance in the 12 months prior to the survey. Responses were strongly skewed, with 69 percent of providers stating they were ‘satisfied’ or ‘very satisfied’ and less than 13 percent saying they were ‘dissatisfied’ or ‘very dissatisfied.’ Only 15 percent said they were neither satisfied nor dissatisfied.
Overall Satisfaction with Contractor Performance
|Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied||14.61|
|Number don’t know/missinga||365|
Source: 2010 Medicare Contractor Performance Satisfaction Survey
a. Includes those who responded ‘don’t know’ or who left the item blank.
b. Unweighted N refers to the total number of actual respondents.
Satisfaction was highest for hospices, end stage renal disease (ESRD) providers, and rural health clinics. Lowest rates of satisfaction were expressed by licensed practitioners and laboratories.
The Audit and Reimbursement and Claims Processing business functions were rated with highest rates of satisfaction, at 80 and 75 percent respectively. Lowest rates of satisfaction were expressed for Provider Enrollment (55 percent) and Appeals (59 percent). Provider Enrollment had a notably high rate of dissatisfaction at 29 percent.
The public report and other related materials may be found on the MCPSS webpage of the CMS website. The next MCPSS will be distributed in January 2011 to a new sample of approximately 33,000 Medicare providers.