Welcome to the Medicare Health Outcomes Survey (HOS) Website
The Medicare HOS was 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 people with Medicare 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 people with Medicare 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. During the most recent HOS administration (2023 Round 26), Cohort 26 was surveyed and Cohort 24 was resurveyed using HOS 3.0. For data collection years 1998-2006, the standard MAO baseline sample size was one thousand. In 2007, the standard sample size was increased to twelve hundred. Since 2019, MAOs can request oversampling if the contract's enrollment permits a sample size larger than the standard sample of 1,200.
What's New on the Medicare HOS
- 2024 HOS and Health Outcomes Survey-Modified (HOS-M) Conditionally-Approved Survey Vendor Lists Available. Final approval of the survey vendors is contingent on successfully completing the survey vendor training in Spring 2024. The lists of conditionally-approved survey vendors are available in the HOS Survey Vendors and the HOS-M Survey Vendors sections.
- 2022 Cohort 25 Baseline Public Use File (PUF) and Data Users Guide (DUG) 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.
- 2022 HOS-M Data Available. The HOS-M data and DUG were made available for plans to request following the CMS announcement to Health Plan Management System (HPMS) users on October 27, 2023. Participating Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) organizations may obtain their data by contacting Medicare HOS Information and Technical Support at email@example.com. The DUG may also be downloaded from the HOS-Modified page.
- 2022 HOS-M Reports Available. These reports were made available to participating PACE organizations via HPMS on October 27, 2023. Plans may contact their CMS Quality Point of Contact to obtain access to the reports. A Sample PACE Report with actual national HOS-M data may be found on the Publications and Resources page.
- 2022 Cohort 25 Baseline Reports Available. The reports were made available to participating MAOs via HPMS on October 27, 2023. MAOs may contact their CMS Quality Point of Contact to obtain access to the reports and the contract-level summary data. If assistance is required regarding HPMS access, MAOs may contact CMS at firstname.lastname@example.org. A Sample Baseline Report with actual national HOS data may be found on the Publications and Resources page.
- 2020-2022 Cohort 23 Analytic PUF and DUG Available. The PUF may be downloaded from the Research Data Files section on the Data page. The DUG may be downloaded from the Data Users Guides section.
- Information for People with Medicare and Their Families. If you have questions or concerns about the HOS or HOS-M, you may contact CMS at 1-800-MEDICARE or the survey organization CMS is working with directly. More information about the survey, including contact information for CMS and each survey vendor, is available under the Information for People with Medicare and Their Families page.
- Medicare HOS Outcomes Measures Moved to Display for 2022 and 2023 Star Ratings. This HPMS memo was released on August 5, 2021 by CMS. The memo states that the two HOS outcomes measures, Improving or Maintaining Physical Health and Improving or Maintaining Mental Health, will be moved to the display page on CMS.gov for the 2022 and 2023 Star Ratings. Due to the pervasive way in which the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency has impacted and will continue to impact the validity of these two HOS outcomes measures for the 2020 and 2021 follow-up measurement periods, the 2022 and 2023 Star Ratings will be calculated without the use of Improving or Maintaining Physical Health and Improving or Maintaining Mental Health.
For additional information about the availability of auxiliary aids and services, please visit the CMS Accessibility & Nondiscrimination for Individuals with Disabilities Notice.
This page was last modified on 02/15/2024
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