Braven Health’s initial enrollment tops all other Medicare Advantage plans

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, RWJBarnabas Health and Hackensack Meridian Health had high hopes last fall when they launched Braven Health, the Medicare Advantage plan they operate together.

Less than a year later, it’s fair to say it has exceeded all expectations.

On Wednesday, Braven Health officials announced its initial enrollment in the eight North and Central Jersey counties it serves — more than 13,000 — is higher than any other Medicare Advantage plan.

In that eight-county area, seven out of 10 Medicare beneficiaries who selected a Medicare Advantage plan selected Braven Health. The record-breaking percentage nearly doubled the all-time high market share percentage by a Medicare Advantage plan in a single year in that eight-county area.

The plan is available in Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, Passaic and Union counties.

CEO Luisa Charbonneau obviously is thrilled by the initial rollout.

“Our enrollment numbers prove that Braven Health listened to New Jersey’s Medicare-eligible consumers and delivered plans that better serve New Jersey,” she said. “We look forward to Braven Health’s continued growth, as we provide the best possible benefits and coordinated care that our great state deserves.”

Charbonneau said she feels Braven Health adapted to better serve its members and potential members during the COVID-19 pandemic, holding virtual information sessions and providing remote assistance to its members. This creative approach helped Braven Health realize its record-breaking enrollment success.

Braven Health officials feel the plan offers a personalized and customized health care experience guided by those who know each member’s health best — their doctors.

Dr. Jessica Israel, a Braven Health Provider Council member and a senior vice president of geriatrics and palliative care at RWJBarnabas Health, certainly feels that way.

“Braven Health is a truly local health plan, bringing together New Jersey’s patients, physicians, its two largest health systems and insurer to put patients first,” she said. “The plan is helping to facilitate the important relationship between the patient and his/her physician, which is proven to lead to better outcomes and more effective chronic disease management.”

Charbonneau said Braven Health is a new approach to Medicare, one that represents a major milestone in the state’s efforts to transform the fee-for-service health care system and improve health care quality, affordability and the customer experience through greater integration, coordination and alignment.

As New Jersey’s first payor-provider owned health plan, Charbonneau said, Braven Health effectively leverages the collective brand strength of each organization to deliver high-quality, personalized care at a lower cost.