PQA Presents Quality Awards to 24 Medicare Plan Contracts for High Achievement in Medication Quality Measures Based on CMS’ Medicare Star Ratings

Alexandria, Va. (May 14, 2020) – The Pharmacy Quality Alliance (PQA) has recognized 24 Medicare plan contracts with a quality award for high achievement or significant improvement in PQA measures of medication safety and appropriate use. The awards are based on published CMS Medicare Part D Star Ratings. PQA provides two awards, an Excellence in Quality Award and a Quality Improvement Award. The awards were announced today at a recognition program during the online 2020 PQA Annual Meeting.

The Excellence in Quality Award recognizes Medicare Advantage Drug Plans (MAPD) and Prescription Drug Plans (PDP).  MAPDs are recognized for achieving at least a 4.5-star Part D summary rating and a 5-star rating on all five PQA medication measures used in the 2020 CMS Star Ratings program. PDPs are recognized for achieving at least a 4.5-star Part D summary rating and a 4-star rating on all five PQA medication measures used in the 2020 CMS program.

The Quality Improvement Award recognizes MAPDs and PDPs that received a 5-star rating on the 2020 CMS Quality Improvement measure and the greatest combined improvement in star ratings from 2019 to 2020 on the four PQA medication measures used in the CMS program during this period.

“The effective use of medications is a top issue for all care providers, and it is extremely important in the Medicare Part D program,” Laura Cranston, RPh, PQA CEO, said. “This year, PQA recognizes 24 plans for their exemplary management of medications for their Medicare members. The excellence and improvement recognized by these awards reflect the organizations’ commitment to high quality medication use strategies by the plans and their partners to care for patients.”

This year’s quality award recipients are:

Excellence in Quality Award – MAPDs (CMS Contract Number) 

  • Alignment Healthcare (H3815)
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts HMO Blue (H2261)
  • CarePlus Health Plans (H1019)
  • Cigna (H5410)
  • Dean Health Plan (H9096)
  • Florida Blue Medicare (H2758)
  • Kaiser Permanente Colorado (H0630)
  • Kaiser Permanente Georgia (H1170)
  • Kaiser Permanente Hawaii Region (H1230)
  • Kaiser Permanente Mid-Atlantic States (H2150)
  • Kaiser Permanente Northern California Pharmacy (H2172)
  • Kaiser Permanente Northwest (H9003)
  • Kaiser Permanente Pharmacy Operations - Southern California Region (H0524)
  • Kaiser Permanente Washington (H5050)
  • PruittHealth Premier (H3291)

Excellence in Quality Award – PDPs (CMS Contract Number)

  • Blue MedicareRx (S2893)
  • Navitus MedicareRx (S9701)
  • Health Alliance Medical Plans (S4219)
  • Pennsylvania Public School Employees’ Retirement System – Health Options Program (E3014)
  • Tufts Health Plan (S0655) 

Quality Improvement Award – MAPDs (CMS Contract Number)

  • Aetna Health (H3597)
  • Coventry Health Care of Missouri (H2663)
  • Superior HealthPlan (H5294)

Quality Improvement Award – PDPs (CMS Contract Number)

  • UnitedHealthcare (S5921)

Five PQA-endorsed quality measures are used in the 2020 Medicare Part D Star Ratings program, and several others are used as Display measures. Details on these measures are available at CMS evaluates Medicare plans based on a 5-star rating system. Star Ratings are calculated each year and may change from one year to the next. More information about Star Ratings can be found at


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Contact: Richard Schmitz, PQA Senior Director of Communications, [email protected] or 703-347-7931

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