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Welcome to the Medicare Health Outcomes Survey (HOS) Website

The Medicare HOS is the first patient-reported outcomes measure used in Medicare managed care. The goal of the Medicare HOS program is to gather valid and reliable clinically meaningful data that have many uses, such as targeting quality improvement activities and resources; monitoring health plan performance and rewarding top-performing health plans; helping beneficiaries make informed health care choices; and advancing the science of functional health outcomes measurement. Managed care plans with Medicare Advantage (MA) contracts must participate.

Each year a random sample of Medicare beneficiaries is drawn and surveyed from each participating Medicare Advantage Organization (MAO) that has a minimum of 500 enrollees (i.e., a survey is administered to a different baseline cohort, or group, each year). Two years later, the baseline respondents are surveyed again (i.e., follow up measurement). Cohort 1 was surveyed in 1998 and was resurveyed in 2000. Cohort 2 was surveyed in 1999 and was resurveyed in 2001, and so on. During the most recent HOS administration (2019 Round 22), Cohort 22 was surveyed and Cohort 20 was resurveyed using HOS 3.0. For data collection years 1998-2006, the MAO sample size was one thousand. Effective 2007, the MAO sample size was increased to twelve hundred.

What's New on the Medicare HOS

  • New Memo related to the Reporting Requirements for HEDIS® Measurement Year (MY) 2020, HOS, and CAHPS® Measures, and Information Regarding HOS and HOS-Modified (HOS-M) for Frailty. The memo was released on September 8, 2020 via the Health Plan Management System (HPMS) and may be accessed there by HPMS users or here. The memo provides information about the HEDIS, HOS, and CAHPS reporting requirements in 2021, as well as the timing of HOS and HOS-M survey administration. An update on the timing for release of information on the HOS and HOS-M for Fully Integrated Dual Eligible (FIDE) Special Needs Plans (SNPs) that will be used for frailty consideration is also included in the memo.

  • NEW 2020 HOS and HOS-M Fielding Timeline. In response to the impact of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE), administration of the 2020 HOS and HOS-M will take place from August to November 2020. The updated 2020 HOS Program Timeline and HOS-M Program Timeline are now available. The memo and the updated HOS QAG Addendum provide more information about the survey.

  • 2017-2019 Cohort 20 Analytic Public Use File (PUF) Available. The PUF may be downloaded from the Research Data Files section on the Data page. The Data Users Guide (DUG) may be downloaded from the Data Users Guides section.

  • Cohort 22 Baseline PUF Available. The PUF may be downloaded from the Research Data Files section on the Data page. The corresponding DUG may be downloaded from the Data Users Guides section.

  • 2017-2019 Cohort 20 Performance Measurement Data Available. The data and accompanying DUG were made available to participating MAOs for download following the CMS announcement to HPMS users on August 3, 2020. The data are distributed via electronic Secure File Transfer and participating MAOs may request their data by contacting the Medicare HOS Information and Technical Support email (hos@hsag.com). The designated data recipient will receive an email from the hosdata@hsag.com mailbox containing instructions and a link to the Secure File Manager facility. The DUG may also be downloaded from the Data Users Guides link on the Data page.

  • 2017-2019 Cohort 20 Performance Measurement Reports Available. The HOS reports were made available to participating MAOs via the HPMS on August 3, 2020. The contract-level summary data file distributed with each MAO report includes results for two HOS functional health measures that are part of the Medicare Part C Star Ratings, and the new Physical Functioning Activities of Daily Living (PFADL) display measure. MAOs may contact their CMS Quality Point of Contact to download the HOS reports and the summary data or contact CMS at hpms_access@cms.hhs.gov for help with HPMS access. A Sample Performance Measurement Report with actual national HOS data is available in the Overview section on the Resources page. The MAO Performance Measurement Contract List specifies the participating MAOs. The list is also available on the Survey Results page.

  • 2019 HOS-M Data Available. The HOS-M data and DUG were made available for plans to request following the CMS announcement to HPMS users on July 6, 2020. Participating Program of All Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) organizations may obtain their data by contacting the Medicare HOS Information and Technical Support email (hos@hsag.com). The DUG may also be downloaded from the HOS-Modified page.

  • Regulatory Response to the COVID-19 PHE. CMS has issued an Emergency Interim Final Rule that delays Medicare HOS data collection until late summer. CMS is continuing to monitor the situation to see if further adjustments are needed. Additional information will be provided in the coming months. The Interim Final Rule is available here: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2020/04/06/2020-06990/medicare-and-medicaid-programs-policy-and-regulatory-revisions-in-response-to-the-covid-19-public.

  • Summer/Fall 2020 Semi-annual HOS Newsletter Available. This edition of the HOS Newsletter was released in September 2020. You may contact the HOS Information and Technical Support email (hos@hsag.com) to sign up for the email distribution.

  • REVISED Description of the PFADL Measure. The PFADL is a new longitudinal change measure derived from the Medicare HOS. The revised version includes updated methodology for the calculation of the measure.

  • NEW Medicare HOS Information and Technical Support email is active! The new email is hos@hsag.com.

  • HEDIS® 2020, Volume 6: Specifications for the Medicare HOS Available. Additional information is available in the Methodology section of the Resources page.

  • 2020 Survey Administration Memos for HOS Survey Vendors and MAOs. The memos containing the requirements for the 2020 HOS administration year have been posted under the Survey Administration section.

For additional information about the availability of auxiliary aids and services, please visit the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Nondiscrimination Notice and Notice of Availability of Auxiliary Aids and Services. Please also visit the Medicare Accessibility and Nondiscrimination Notice for CMS Accessible Communications.

 

This page was last modified on 10/26/2020

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