On October 15th, 1199SEIU nurses and caregivers launched a public information campaign to warn their colleagues and all seniors throughout Puerto Rico about the Medicare Advantage plans MMM Healthcare and PMC Medicare Choice.
Both plans are under investigation by the Department of Justice Civil Fraud Division, and have received low ratings in customer service, drug pricing and patient safety from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Furthermore, over 50,000 customers who were enrolled in MMM Healthcare or PMC Medicare in 2011 may have had their personal health information compromised when office computers were stolen.
The public information campaign is launched in conjunction with the Medicare Open Enrollment period beginning October 15 and running through December 7. Materials included a mass postcard mailing to 1199 retirees throughout Puerto Rico, newspaper advertising, and radio ads running on popular stations for seniors. Nearly 2,000 1199SEIU retirees live in Puerto Rico.
MMM and PMC Medicare Choice have 212,000 customers throughout Puerto Rico. The plans are run by Aveta Inc., one of the largest managed care providers in the United States, headquartered in New Jersey. Daniel Straus, who runs the hugely profitable Care One and HealthBridge nursing homes chains in Connecticut, New Jersey and other states, is the principal shareholder of Aveta Inc. Some Care One and HealthBridge homes have violated federal labor law by threatening to slash healthcare benefits, staffing and wages for caregivers, or by refusing to recognize caregivers' legally protected right to form a union.
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