Daily Kos: The neverending Republican war on Medicare

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

NEW REPORT HIGHLIGHTS MEDICARE ADVANTAGE INSURERS’ HIGHER ADMINISTRATIVE SPENDING by Leader Nancy Pelosiby cracking down on fraud, reduce the deficit & save the program but keeps age at 65. When I buy a house listed for 500K and negotiate the price down to 300K because of repairs I argue it needs or because I promise to buy all my houses in the future  through this guy. It’s not  a cut to the house? The house is still the same house I just saved myself 200K on the purchase so that’s what BO did, add 716 billion $ in savings to medicare by cracking down on waste and fraudulent claims, while not just keeping benefits but enhancing the same medicare benefits, then  adding years to Medicare. So Dems added those savings back into medicare to save seniors money on preventative care & free prescription drugs (Closing the donut hole as they call it), so seniors now get their prescription drugs without out of pocket costs. Of course Ryan Myth have to frame the 716 billion dollar savings from Obama as a cut because that’s what their plan actually does –which is cut medicare funds for seniors/benificiaries. Dems are crazy if they don’t get a clue & frame the argument themselves for what it is: Dems don’t cut medicare, they add savings to medicare whereas Ryan Myth do cut it so that’s why they have to frame the argument as a cut & pretend Dems are cutting too. Dems are not cutting, they’re saving $ so big difference. Dems better start setting the narrative instead of letting Rethugs set the narrative thereby arguing on their turf. Wise up, Dems, this is your program, we all know it so don’t let the wolf argue to the baby sheep that he’s their best protector for them over over their own mother. Dems are not Myth who would eat his young (He promised to repeal O’Romneycare & increase waste spening blowing up the deficit), Dems are proud of medicare, ss medicaid and welfare reform. Dems are the “socialists” who have always argued for medicare and so-called socialist programs or are rethugs embracing “socialism” now? Seriously this argument is so stupid from Rethugs to make, I’m surprised they’re not being laughed at by the few serious reporters around. This argument is so surreal from rethugs it doesn’t pass the giggle test, all it takes is one swift attack from Dems and they’re out of the water. Dems need to bring out those 2010 TV ads where Rethugs used their moms to reassure voters they would protect medicare and promised they would never vote against medicare…and what did they do as soon as they were elected? They made liar put of their own moms as 98% of rethugs voted to support Ryan’s budget which cuts medicare into a voucher coupon program that places cost burden on seniors, requiring seniors to come out of pocket for $6500 to cover medicare expenses. In addition, Ryan Myth re-opens the donut hole so seniors have to start coming out of pocket on prescription drugs again which are now covered for seniors due to the 716 billion $ savings BO added into medicare with health care, medicare reform. So BO, the “socialist” big spender adds savings to a program, lowering the gov’t spending and the deficit VS Ryan Myth who want to make gov’t bigger by adding waste, pork, fraud claims to favor the millionaire insurance company owners but Bo’s the “socialist” big spender & Ryan Myth are the fiscal hawks? Yea, right, tell us another funny story boys. Dems need to go hard with this, in lockstep. Rethugs are going to be forceful, bold since they’re desperately lying but Dems have truth on their side, so we need to be bolder & never let up on driving this truth home. Shame them with those TV ads where they pimped out their own sweet innocent moms & made liars out of their own moms, as soon as they were elected. Anybody who would make a liar out of their own moms would do anything, even sell out their own country to a group of oligarch billionaires who want to go to war with Iran.
Source: dailykos.com

Video: WFG NEW TRADITIONAL MEDICARE SUPPLEMENT PLANS VIDEO 4.wmv

Top 5 Reasons Why Medicare Voucher Reform Is Stupid

In the health-care industry, competition hasn’t produced the savings that economists expected, and instead has led to other problems, such as gaps in coverage. Remember the rise of H.M.O.s, another idea that was supposed to revolutionize health care and drive down costs? Part of the problem is the advance of costly treatments. But a bigger problem is that private insurers, rather than haggling with doctors and hospitals, try to make money by limiting the procedures they cover and by aggressively managing their risk pools—that is, taking on fewer sick people. This problem can be addressed through vigorous oversight, but that’s not an easy thing to implement, especially when half of Congress is controlled by a party that breaks out in hives at the very idea of government regulation.
Source: teapartyslayer.com

FAQ: Decoding The $716 Billion In Medicare Reductions

Ryan’s plan also calls for an overhaul of the program, offering beneficiaries a set amount of money that they would use toward buying a private plan or traditional Medicare. Democrats have argued that such a fundamental change could undermine the traditional Medicare program, because private plans might tailor their coverage to attract healthier beneficiaries, leaving sicker beneficiaries in traditional Medicare. Critics of Ryan’s plan also predict it will force seniors to eventually pay more for their health care because the federal payments will be capped at the rate of gross domestic product plus half a percentage point, an amount that may not keep up with the increase in medical costs. Under Ryan’s plan, insurers would have to provide benefits that are at least equal the value of those offered in traditional Medicare. 
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Can hospice function under Medicare premium support?

How common is it for MA patients to elect hospice as compared to traditional Medicare? MA patients are more likely to choose hospice than are beneficiaries in traditional Medicare, though the gap has been shrinking (47.8% of MA decedents v. 43% FFS in 2010; 30.9% MA v. 20.5% FFS in 2000 p. 288; longstanding p.141-143). MA plans have a financial incentive to encourage hospice selection because it pushes end-of-life costs to traditional Medicare, though a study testing whether making hospice a part of the capitation payment for MA* concluded that it would only save traditional Medicare a modest amount of money. However, this study focused on enrollment in hospice during the last month of life, which covers around two-thirds of users, using data from the 1990s. Since then, the expansion of hospice in Medicare has grown steadily, primarily through increased use of hospice by older beneficiaries, and via an increase in the use of hospice by persons with non-Cancer terminal diagnoses (like CHF and dementia). This means the tails of one side of the distribution (long users) have gotten a lot longer (90th percentile 150 days in 2000, 250 days in 2010 while the 25th percentile stay has been 5-6 days for 20 years. There is a literature on the correlates of hospice choice that partially line up with the correlates of MA advantage selection that I will post on later (urban, white, higher education and higher income are all more likely to choose MA, and hospice, even within traditional Medicare).
Source: wordpress.com

Why Ryan’s Medicare Plan is Harmful to Those Over 55

As Think Progress explained, the incentives are strong for the private insurers to “cherry pick” the healthiest seniors and leave older and less healthy seniors in traditional fee-for-service Medicare. As the traditional Medicare population gets disproportionately less-healthy, costs go up, meaning that even more younger, healthier Medicare beneficiaries use their government vouchers to buy private health insurance.  As the cycle continues, traditional Medicare would be driven into a death spiral. Medicare as we know it would soon end for everyone – including those over the age of 55 – and private insurers would be fully in charge of care for our seniors.
Source: healthcareforamericanow.org

Ryan’s “premium support” proposal for Medicare: Myths and facts

2. Myth: Expanding private plans in Medicare will reduce Medicare’s costs.  Fact:  Private Medicare Advantage plans have raised Medicare costs.  Private insurers profit by selectively enrolling the healthy and shunning the sick, as documented in a New England Journal of Medicine article subtitled “The healthy go in and the sick go out.” Hence, they collect premiums paid by the Medicare program, and provide little care. As a result, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that Medicare Advantage plans cost Medicare 12 percent more per enrollee than the traditional program. New research from the National Bureau of Economic Research indicates that the true cost of private plans to Medicare may be much higher than the CBO estimate. Since Medicare launched a new risk adjustment scheme based on 70 diagnostic codes in 2004, overpayments to private plans have increased dramatically and accounted for $30 billion in excess spending, or 8 percent of total  Medicare spending, in 2006 alone. Since then the overpayments have likely risen as the proportion of Medicare recipients in private plans has jumped from 16 percent to 24 percent.
Source: pnhp.org

Brad DeLong: Who’s on First? Medicare Edition

Mitt Romney: Paul Ryan Medicare Plan And Mine Are The Same, ‘If Not Identical': Presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney said Wednesday his Medicare plan was “close to identical” to that of his vice-presidential choice, Rep. Paul Ryan…. “Actually, Paul Ryan and my plan for Medicare, I think, is the same, if not identical — it’s probably close to identical,” he told Green Bay station WBAY. Ryan, as a House member, in 2011 proposed shifting Medicare entirely to a voucher-like system, then tweaked the proposal in 2012 to offer traditional Medicare alongside private plans….
Source: typepad.com

Paul Ryan’s Medicare plan would ‘pave Paradise’

I believe that there is much that can be improved in the current Medicare program without destroying its basic social insurance framework. There are ways to manage the care of people with chronic illness more effectively; there are a number of ways to pay providers differently so that they are not incented to provide more care instead of better care; there are ways to save money through tougher action on fraud and abuse; and there are options to increase the eligibility age or have higher income seniors pay even more than they do now that could save money for Medicare without changing its basic structure.
Source: healthinsurance.org

Wyden’s Medicare collaboration with Ryan puts him center stage for 2012

Jeff – I think we all agree that these programs need some adjustment but like everything else the devil is in the details. Social Security is an easy fix…right now the eligibility is gradually increasing up to 67 done thanks to President Reagan. The age should continue to increase gradually until it reaches 70. Additionally, lift the $106,000 cap on income possibly to $250,000 or more. That’s all that needs to be done for SS. Now Medicare….increase the FICA contribution that we all pay. Believe me I would pay a little more out of my paycheck in heartbeat to get the great benefit that Medicare offers seniors. If Americans knew how good the benefits were, no one would complain about a few dollars more out of your paycheck. But no, that would be too easy. Republicans have to give wealthy individuals yet another tax break on top of the two they already have. In order to achieve that they have to tell the American people what dire straits Medicare is in and the only way….the only way….we can fix it is to reduce benefits drastically for all those Americans under the age of 55. BULL S**T. They are trying to sell the American people a load of it. Republicans have no interest in saving Medicare. They’ve been trying to get rid of it since its’ inception in the ’60s. Don’t let these people fool you. Once the Republican camel has his nose under the tent……Medicare will be a wistful memory….these people have no shame and Paul Ryan is the biggest cheerleader for the “I’ve got mine” crowd. He loves enriching the 1% and has no use for the middle class or the working poor. In his world view, they are not the important people.
Source: nbcnews.com

McGladrey: Larry Goldberg added as advisor

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Deputy Administrator and Director for the Center of Medicare at CMS Jonathan Blum visits Christiana Care to speak about accountable care organizations by Christiana CareIn his role with McGladrey, Goldberg will provide in-depth analysis and reporting on emerging health care legislation and regulations impacting Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement. Goldberg formed Larry Goldberg Consulting after serving as the director of a Big Four firm’s Office of Washington National Affairs for Health Care, where he was an expert on Medicare and Medicaid health care financial issues and assisted both the firm and clients on health care financing issues for more than 22 years.
Source: big4.com

Video: Medicare Plan Selection Help~Allsup Medicare Advisor

Find Medicare Supplemental Insurance in Your Area With the Senior Advisor Group

The Senior Advisor Group is an independent insurance advisory group specializing in Medicare insurance and other insurance options for those on Medicare. Their role is to assists seniors in finding with the best Medicare Supplemental Insurance, including advice on Supplemental Plans, Advantage Plans, Medicare Part D insurance and other related supplemental insurance. By partnering with over 40 different insurance companies, the Senior Advisor Group works on the side of the client’s with no obligation to any one insurance company. For the individual client they will search from all of the top insurers to find the best products at the best price – as well as provide ongoing professional, personalized service to each Medicare beneficiary year after year. The Senior Advisors also provides clients on Medicare with dental, hearing, and vision coverage, as well as Rx discount cards at no cost to customers. As a national advisory group, Senior Advisor Group represents all of the top rated and the largest Medicare supplemental insurance providers available. Their objective is to provide unbiased advice on Medicare Supplemental Insurance from highly trained, Medicare insurance specialists. Each specialist is trained on the various Medicare Insurance options, and will assist each individual with a plan selection, and provide continual advice year after year on Medicare supplement plans and Medicare Part D coverage. As Medicare insurance specialist, Medicare Insurance is not just a part of their business it is their business. The Senior Advisor Group was established to deliver what insurance companies can’t – unbiased and objective advice. They will assist and complete enrollment in the best available plan for the client, not the best available plan for the provider. For those new to Medicare or just looking to compare coverage options simply submit a request and one of their specialist will call within 24 hours.
Source: sbwire.com

Daily Kos: CNN: Senior Romney Advisor Says Romney, Ryan on Same Page About Turning Medicare into Voucher System

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Source: dailykos.com

Interview with Obama Campaign Advisor David Axelrod

AXELROD: Well, let me answer — you have a number of different questions in there. As to the ad you referenced, nobody should or — should accuse Governor Romney of being responsible for that woman’s death. And frankly, Piers, you and I have a difference. I don’t think that was the — that was the — that was the explicit message of that spot. But what is indisputable is that the workers at that steel company got a — got a bad deal from Governor Romney and his partners who walked away from millions of dollars after loading up the company with debt and bankrupting the company and leaving the workers and the creditors holding the bag.
Source: realclearpolitics.com

AMAC: Obamacare vs The Preservation of Medicare

There are many reasons polls show that majority of Americans don’t like the Affordable Care Act and among the top is that it threatens Medicare coverage, Weber explained.  He pointed out that “in addition to its book-keeping tricks that allows the government to rob Peter to pay Paul, the program forces doctors and medical institutions to accept less pay for service.  Many of them are likely to stop seeing Medicare patients because they can’t afford to.”
Source: amac.us

Gibbs: Ryan should ‘thank’ Obama for strengthening Medicare

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Senate Dems Protest Medicare Cuts by Talk Radio News ServiceGibbs pushed back on those claims during an interview on Fox News Sunday. “If he wants to protect Medicare for his mother he should first of all thank President Obama for what he’s done over the past few years to extend the life of the Medicare trust fund, to help seniors with their prescription drug costs  to help seniors get free preventive care. ” said Gibbs.
Source: thehill.com

Video: Stephanie Cutter: Medicare Whiteboard

Daily Kos: House Democrats spell out Medicare, Medicaid impact of Romney/Ryan plan

I have a relative who is 91 and has been in a nursing home for 3 years.  She is totally out of it – dementia – and  we’re just waiting for the end.  Her husband (no children) has a small home and some savings; she used up all of her Medicare benefits more than 2 years ago and now the $5,700 nursing home fee is paid from their savings each month, and is not going to last forever. Her doctor visits are still covered and a physician sees her three times a week.  This means a doctor – whose last name is 23 letters long and for the life of me I am unable to understand a word he says – first talks with the head nurse and checks the charts of each of the 20 (mostly dementia) patients in the wing of  his visitation route and then proceeds down the hall. While I was visiting her one morning, he came to the doorway – not to her bed – said hello to me and asked (I think) how she was doing.  I said simply “no change” he said goodbye and left.  And he bills Medicare $270 a week, for her, for these three visits. – Multiply that by by the 20 patients in the wing and you get his weekly payout at $5,400, monthly, $21,600.  There are 5 other wings in this facility and those fees bring doctor costs up to $500,000 a month.  This is just one nursing home in one county, in one state, so you can just imagine the numbers extended out  – some nursing homes less, some more, but THIS is a big part if what is wrong with the system as it is being utilized now. I don’t have the an solution, but it would be impossible and morally wrong to take away late-life health care for the elderly, or healthcare for anyone , for that matter.  Other countries, the UK, Skandinavia, for example have more efficient systems and they seem to be working much better than ours.  I think we just need to re-vamp the system to eliminate the “money-suckers” who get rich off of it.
Source: dailykos.com

The Bizarro Medicare Debate

We’ve spent a lot of time arguing about Medicare this week: What each of the presidential candidates is proposing and what it would mean for seniors. But sometimes, with all of the gobbledygook about benefit guarantees and growth rates, it’s easy to lose sight of what each side of the debate really wants. And that’s the real issue. Who believes in Medicare and who doesn’t? Who thinks that government should guarantee that all seniors have a defined set of benefits and who does not?
Source: realclearpolitics.com

Romney podcast says Medicare was ‘raided’ to pay for health law

“Now if that wasn’t bad enough, his healthcare law also put in place a board of 15 unelected bureaucrats and gave them the power to make additional cuts to Medicare without even having to get approval from Congress,” Romney added. “This means they could deny elderly Americans the care they’ve worked for their entire lives – all because President Obama trusts bureaucrats more than he trusts seniors and their doctors.”
Source: thehill.com

Ryan: ‘Bring on’ Medicare Fight

Ryan’s emergence has changed the campaign’s focus to fiscal matters, experts say. That could boost the GOP ticket, “given the public’s concerns with debt and deficits,” or the unpopularity of Ryan’s proposals could become a hurdle for the Romney campaign, said Christopher Borick, a political science professor at Muhlenberg College.
Source: townhall.com

Paul Ryan Delivers Medicare Reform Speech to Florida Seniors With His Mom By His Side

Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan held a rally at The Villages, Florida. He was joined by his 78-year-old mother, Betty Douglas, as he delivered as speech on Medicare reform to the retirement-age community. Ryan told the crowd, “You learn a lot about life, you learn a lot about you elderly seniors in your family, you learn a lot about Alzheimer’s. Medicare was there for our family, for my grandma when we needed it then and Medicare is there for my mom while she needs it now, and we have to keep that guarantee.”
Source: foxnewsinsider.com

Congressional Leaders Issue Medicare Talking Points for August

Mr. Israel lists a host of talking points for candidates to use in their districts, including, “The Ryan budget, which my opponent supports, ends Medicare, increasing health care costs for seniors by $6,400 a year while giving $265,000 in additional tax breaks to people making more than $1 million and “Even Republicans say it’s bad for seniors and former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich called this plan “right-wing social engineering.”
Source: nytimes.com

The American Spectator : The Spectacle Blog : Obama, a Tweet, and Medicare

Since Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) became the GOP nominee for Vice President, the future of Medicare has gone from being an important secondary issue to the issue most mainstream pundits (and both campaigns) are talking about. The Romney campaign has released an ad hammering Obama over his Medicare cuts, liberals and conservatives alike have gone after the Obama and Romney campaigns, and the Obama campaign Twitter feed seems to only stop talking about Medicare and the Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act (Affordable Care Act) when it wants to talk about how bad Ryan and Romney are for women.
Source: spectator.org

Brad DeLong: Ed Gillespie: Romney Would Rapidly Remove 65 and 66 Year Olds from Medicare

Aviva Shen: Romney Adviser Says GOP Would Extend Medicare’s Solvency By Raising The Eligibility Age: Earlier this week, Mitt Romney pledged to restore Obamacare’s savings in the Medicare program — a move that would move up the insolvency date of the program’s trust fund from 2024 to 2016. On Fox News Sunday, Chris Wallace asked Romney senior adviser Ed Gillespie how the campaign would extend the life of the program if the Romney-Ryan reforms won’t kick in until 2023, long after Medicare reached insolvency. Gillespie replied by insisting that a Romney administration would raise the age eligibility to 67:
Source: typepad.com

Paul Ryan – Insider Trading and War on Medicare

Paul Ryan has become a lightening rod for controversy, both for his aggressive plans to cut Medicare and Social Security and for questions surrounding suspicious-looking trades in financial stocks that were September 18, 2008, the same day Congressional leadership was briefed about the crisis by Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson.
Source: nakedcapitalism.com

Obama And Romney Offer Competing Medicare Visions

The New York Times: Romney Says He Paid At Least 13% In Income Taxes Now, after Mr. Romney’s decision to name Representative Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin as his vice-presidential choice, the campaign is instead waging an aggressive battle on Medicare, welfare and Mr. Obama’s character. That change in focus can be seen in the campaign’s ads and in Mr. Romney’s speeches. And it stands in contrast to the approaches of some Republican Congressional candidates, who said Thursday that they intended to wage their own campaigns strictly on economic issues. “We are staying on our message,” said Chris Collins, the Republican candidate in New York’s 27th District, near Buffalo. Mr. Collins said that Republicans should welcome the Medicare debate, but that in his own campaign, “every time anything comes up, I bring it back to the economy, the economy, Obamacare” (Shear, 8/16).
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Tomas Stories n’ Links: Understanding Rep. Ryan’s Plan For Medicare

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

MORE DIRTY TRICKS FROM YOUR SOCIALIST/MARXIST   PRESIDENT AND HIS NASTY LITTLE ADMINISTRATION HACKS by SS&SSThe Ryan – Romney team wants to end Medicare and replace it with a check to my health Care provider which is Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Blue Cross and Blue Shield gets $10,000 dollars of my money every year to pay for my wife’s and my health Care. I pay Medicare over $1,000 dollars every year for my health care. My wife also pays Medicare about $1,000 dollars every year for her health care. The Ryan -Romney budget wants to end all that and give me $8,500 for all my health care. The Ryan -Romney budget wants to end all that and give my wife $8,500 for all her health care. At the moment Medicare gets about $2,000 from us. Blue Cross gets about $10,000 from us. That is about $12,000 for our health care. The Ryan – Romney plan will pay $17,000 for our health care. For a Federal savings of (-$5,000). And a $5,000 bonus for Blue Cross and Blue Shield. ***  Understanding Rep. Ryan’s Plan For Medicare As the link above states I may only get $400 dollars a month and that would scare us pretty bad and leave us cold and wet on an iceberg of financial despair.
Source: blogspot.com

Video: Blue Cross Blue Shield Medicare Supplement-Compare 180 Comp

Which Health Insurance Customers Will See a Reduction in Rates

The legislation continues the progress that has already been made, with average base rates falling dramatically in the past three years.  In April 2010, Governor Patrick directed DOI to use existing authority to review small-group health insurance rates and use statutory powers to disapprove rates that were unreasonable or excessive. The Division disapproved 235 of 274 rates at that point, and later negotiated lower rate increases with carriers. In May 2012, DOI announced that small group health insurance base rates increases dropped to 0.7 percent in the third quarter.
Source: newenglandpost.com

The American Maverick: OBAMA’S $8 BILLION MEDICARE CURVE BALL ON SENIORS

However!  As politics would imagine for Barack Obama this is not good timing.  Yes, he wants the new health care act to be funded, yet he has an election to win on November 6.  Obama is fearful of infuriating seniors with a sudden Medicare Advantage rate increase so close to Election Day.  Therefore, he is pressuring government agencies such as the General Accounting Office and Health & Human Services to delay the rate increase on America’s seniors until after the election.  This would only be a delay.  The premiums will be increasing.  Unfortunately, this delay is solely for political gain by Barack Obama at the expense of America’s seniors.
Source: theamericanmaverick.com

Dave Fluker’s California Health Insurance Blog: Blue Shield CA Extends Medicare Supplement Special Enrollment Period

Blue Shield of California has announced the extension of their “special enrollment period” for Medicare Supplement plans in California to November 30, 2012. Previous end date was September 30, 2012. The special enrollment period is basically a full-time “birthday rule”. In California, those who are covered by Original Medicare and a Medicare Supplement Plan (Medi-Gap) (A-N) have the right, on their birthday, to move to any other insurance companies’ like or lesser Medicare Supplement Plan with no medical underwriting. California is one of the few states that has a “birthday rule” in regard to Medi-Gap plans. The current Blue Shield CA special enrollment period allows those covered by a Medicare Supplement with another insurer to move to a “like or lesser” Supplement plan with Blue Shield with no medical underwriting in any month, not just the month of your birthday. Additionally Blue Shield CA has also extended the “new to Medicare” $20 per month discount for the first year. This discount for those who are new to Medicare (either turning 65 or enrolling in Part B for the first time) makes their Medi-Gap plans very competitive for that first year. With the California birthday rule, a person can change to another carrier should the rates increase after the discount and lower rates are available from another insurer in California.
Source: blogspot.com

Independence Blue Cross Announces Winners of IBX Game Changers ChallengePHILADELPHIA

Independence Blue Cross Announces Winners of IBX Game Changers Challenge PHILADELPHIA — Independence Blue Cross (IBX) today announced the winners of the "IBX Game Changers Challenge: Enhancing health and wellness through innovation." After receiving 150 entries and … Independence Blue Cross Offers Innovative and Flexible Choices for Individuals PHILADELPHIA — Independence Blue Cross (IBC) is pleased to announce the introduction of three new competitively priced health plans for individuals and families. Customers in southeastern Pennsylvania … Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts and Healthbox Partner to Foster and Support Innovative Health Care Startups in … Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts and Healthbox, a company that supports early-stage health care innovation and entrepreneurship, announced today they are leading a partnership to accelerate the businesses of ten Massachusetts-based health care companies. Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Brings Health Screenings, Hula Hoops and Healthy Recipes to Kentucky State Fair Continuing a 20-year tradition, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, Kentucky s largest health benefits company, will again sponsor free skin cancer and oral cancer screenings at the 108th Kentucky State Fair, Aug.
Source: medicare-news.com

Ask The Experts: Retirement

Q. I will retire after age 65. My husband is already older than 65, and we are both covered by my Blue Cross Blue Shield FEHB. I realize I don’t have to make a decision for either of us concerning taking Medicare Part B as long as I’m employed by the federal government. After I retire, I realize BCBS will be constrained by law to pay no more than the Medicare fee schedule amount for services rendered for either of us should I chose not to take Medicare Part B for either of us. Can my doctor require me to pay the difference between the Medicare allowed part my insurance pays and what my doctor wants to charge? Or is my doctor mandated by law to keep fees for services at the Medicare Part B limit regardless of whether my doctor accepts Medicare Part B or not?
Source: federaltimes.com

TRICARE SUPPLEMENTAL INSURANCE

Charles Peeler has been providing Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas Medicare Supplement plans since 1993. For more information or to acquire an instant quote visit his Texas Medicare Supplement site today!  
Source: tricaresupplementalinsurance.com

In The News: Enfield, Vernon Medicare beneficiaries get extra help with prescriptions : JoeCourtney.com

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

"Citizenship is a tough occupation which obliges the citizen to make his own informed opinion and stand by it." ~ Martha Gellhorn  by eyewashdesign: A. Golden“Throughout the year, as more seniors hit the doughnut hole, the number of beneficiaries and the total amount of assistance will continue to increase,” U.S. Rep. Joseph D. Courtney, D-2nd District, said. “In the wake of the Supreme Court’s ruling upholding the Affordable Care Act, seniors can now rest assured that this assistance is permanent, and will continue to grow until the doughnut hole is closed entirely in 2020.”
Source: joecourtney.com

Video: Extra Help for those on Medicare Part D Plans

Commission on Aging meets in Homer

The Alaska Commission on Aging meets in Homer next week, holding its conference at the Homer Senior Center with presentations, including a session to make sense of Medicare for seniors and family alike. Judith Bendersky, a Medicare counselor with the Alaska Department of Health’s senior and disabilities office, will give a seminar 6-8 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 22. Then she is available for individual appointments and consultations from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Aug. 23 at the Homer Senior Center. Bendersky’s visit coincides with the Alaska Commission on Aging’s quarterly meeting. A forum from 1-4 p.m. Tuesday will include an educational presentation by the Alzheimer’s Disease Resource Agency of Alaska about ADRD, followed by a community conversation to discuss the unique needs of people with ADRD and their caregivers. The new changes in Medicare mean some choices are now available that weren’t in the past. Bendersky said there are the most important facts to impart about Medicare: About six months before turning 65 every person should think about their health insurance. Almost everyone is eligible for Medicare at age 65 but not everyone has to enroll, depending upon their own or their spouse’s health insurance coverage. But everyone should get ready for Medicare and understand the basics: • Part A is typically premium-free and covers hospitalization. • Part B is typically around $100/month and covers outpatient services, including medical supplies and some vaccines. • Part D covers prescription medications via local retail pharmacy or mail-order. • The decision of which Part D plan to sign up for is based on what medications a person takes and what plans their local pharmacy participates with, so it is highly individualized. • There’s extra help programs for people with a limited income that helps pay for prescriptions and premiums for Medicare called “Extra Help.” People who use veteran’s hospitals or tribal health services have slightly different circumstances, but generally will still need to get ready for Medicare and understand their options. Retirees from the state or federal government, and some unions, may have a retiree health plan that will become secondary to Medicare upon their retirement and turning 65. “Knowledge is power. People get confused and there’s aggressive marketing that does confuse people,” Bendersky said. “If you are getting Social Security, you will be assigned A and B. If you aren’t getting Social Security, if you want Medicare, you would need to contact them. But you do not have to enroll.” Medicare fees are deducted from social security payments collected by retired people. Part D is also up to the individual to enroll in that part of Medicare. One option for making sure it’s working well is to let a Medicare counsellor look at a list of the person’s prescriptions and go through the enrollment process that way. Open enrollment for Medicare will be Oct. 15-Dec. 7. “It’s good to plan ahead for October. Every year the plans change and people’s medication needs change. It’s best to review the prescription drug plan every year to make sure it is the best one,” Bendersky said. Call for a Thursday, Aug. 23, appointment at (907) 230-1935. Bring any health insurance cards and policy descriptions. Especially if on Medicare, bring the red-white and blue Medicare card. She will also address how Medicare interacts with Medicaid for people who have both. There also is a local Certified Medicare Counselor available in Homer. Patty Boily from the Independent Living Center is a Medicare expert and can be called at 235-7911. Everyone is welcome to call Alaska’s Medicare resource at 800-478-6065 to understand their specific options.
Source: homertribune.com

Daily Kos: The neverending Republican war on Medicare

by cracking down on fraud, reduce the deficit & save the program but keeps age at 65. When I buy a house listed for 500K and negotiate the price down to 300K because of repairs I argue it needs or because I promise to buy all my houses in the future  through this guy. It’s not  a cut to the house? The house is still the same house I just saved myself 200K on the purchase so that’s what BO did, add 716 billion $ in savings to medicare by cracking down on waste and fraudulent claims, while not just keeping benefits but enhancing the same medicare benefits, then  adding years to Medicare. So Dems added those savings back into medicare to save seniors money on preventative care & free prescription drugs (Closing the donut hole as they call it), so seniors now get their prescription drugs without out of pocket costs. Of course Ryan Myth have to frame the 716 billion dollar savings from Obama as a cut because that’s what their plan actually does –which is cut medicare funds for seniors/benificiaries. Dems are crazy if they don’t get a clue & frame the argument themselves for what it is: Dems don’t cut medicare, they add savings to medicare whereas Ryan Myth do cut it so that’s why they have to frame the argument as a cut & pretend Dems are cutting too. Dems are not cutting, they’re saving $ so big difference. Dems better start setting the narrative instead of letting Rethugs set the narrative thereby arguing on their turf. Wise up, Dems, this is your program, we all know it so don’t let the wolf argue to the baby sheep that he’s their best protector for them over over their own mother. Dems are not Myth who would eat his young (He promised to repeal O’Romneycare & increase waste spening blowing up the deficit), Dems are proud of medicare, ss medicaid and welfare reform. Dems are the “socialists” who have always argued for medicare and so-called socialist programs or are rethugs embracing “socialism” now? Seriously this argument is so stupid from Rethugs to make, I’m surprised they’re not being laughed at by the few serious reporters around. This argument is so surreal from rethugs it doesn’t pass the giggle test, all it takes is one swift attack from Dems and they’re out of the water. Dems need to bring out those 2010 TV ads where Rethugs used their moms to reassure voters they would protect medicare and promised they would never vote against medicare…and what did they do as soon as they were elected? They made liar put of their own moms as 98% of rethugs voted to support Ryan’s budget which cuts medicare into a voucher coupon program that places cost burden on seniors, requiring seniors to come out of pocket for $6500 to cover medicare expenses. In addition, Ryan Myth re-opens the donut hole so seniors have to start coming out of pocket on prescription drugs again which are now covered for seniors due to the 716 billion $ savings BO added into medicare with health care, medicare reform. So BO, the “socialist” big spender adds savings to a program, lowering the gov’t spending and the deficit VS Ryan Myth who want to make gov’t bigger by adding waste, pork, fraud claims to favor the millionaire insurance company owners but Bo’s the “socialist” big spender & Ryan Myth are the fiscal hawks? Yea, right, tell us another funny story boys. Dems need to go hard with this, in lockstep. Rethugs are going to be forceful, bold since they’re desperately lying but Dems have truth on their side, so we need to be bolder & never let up on driving this truth home. Shame them with those TV ads where they pimped out their own sweet innocent moms & made liars out of their own moms, as soon as they were elected. Anybody who would make a liar out of their own moms would do anything, even sell out their own country to a group of oligarch billionaires who want to go to war with Iran.
Source: dailykos.com

Help available with prescription costs for qualifying Medicare recipients

“The Extra Help program could pay your monthly drug plan premium, annual deductible, and some or all of your copayments for prescription drugs,” said Lori Moon, case manager for Meals-on-Wheels of Johnson and Ellis Counties. “The Medicare Savings Programs may pay some or all of the Medicare Part A and B premiums, deductibles and coinsurances.”
Source: italyneotribune.com

Column: Medicare and the third rail

Not that Democrats are more honest. The attack on Romney-Ryan for “ending Medicare as we know it” studiously ignores the unpleasant reality that Medicare as we know it cannot continue. Meanwhile, an Obama campaign video of Floridians bemoaning the GOP team’s Medicare plan — “it’s my No. 1 priority now that I’m going on 65,” one woman says — somehow omits the salient fact that current beneficiaries and those near retirement would be unaffected.
Source: dglobe.com

Medicare and the Third Rail

Not that Democrats are more honest. The attack on Romney-Ryan for “ending Medicare as we know it” studiously ignores the unpleasant reality that Medicare as we know it cannot continue. Meanwhile, an Obama campaign video of Floridians bemoaning the GOP team’s Medicare plan (“It’s my No. 1 priority now that I’m going on 65,” one woman says) somehow omits the salient fact that current beneficiaries and those near retirement would be unaffected.
Source: realclearpolitics.com

Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month; Use Online Services

But you can do more than apply for benefits. You can find a lot of information and a number of online services that allow you to complete your Social Security business online, in English or Spanish. One of the most popular is our Retirement Estimator, which provides an instant, personalized estimate of your future Social Security benefits. Using the actual wages posted in your Social Security record, the Estimator will give you a good picture of what to expect in benefits. It protects your personal information by providing only retirement benefit estimates — it does not show the earnings information used to calculate the benefit estimate, nor does it reveal other identifying information. You can plug in different retirement scenarios and future wage amounts to get estimates for different situations.
Source: paramuspost.com

Medicare Rights Center webinar on health reform and Medicare has reached capacity

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Cassandra Q. Butts by Center for American ProgressWe are very pleased with the overwhelming response to our webinar, said Joe Baker, president of the Center for health insurance. It just goes to show that people are looking for accurate and unbiased information about impact of healthcare reform. Since the implementation of health reform takes place, we, the rights of health insurance will continue to serve as a go-to source such information.
Source: whitespider.org

Video: Medicare Rights Center

Medicare Rights Center marks anniversary of Affordable Care Act

“In the second year of its implementation, the ACA has improved access to health care for millions of people with Medicare,” said Joe Baker, President of the Medicare Rights Center. “Medicare beneficiaries are receiving preventive services at no cost as well as cheaper prescription drugs in the coverage gap, and while the immediate benefits of health reform are encouraging, there is still a lot to look forward to as the law is being implemented.”
Source: 50plusnorthwest.com

Low Cost Health Insurance Plans and Companies: From the Desk of Joe Baker

This month, the Medicare Rights Center, working in coalition with the Center for Disability Rights, Center for Independence of the Disabled New York (CIDNY), Community Service Society of New York (CSS), Empire Justice Center, Legal Aid Society, New York Association on Independent Living and Selfhelp Community Service, Inc., has submitted comments to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and testimony to the United States Senate Special Committee on Aging to improve New York’s and other states’ proposals to coordinate care for people with both Medicare and Medicaid, also known as “dual-eligibles.”  We are also working with national partners, such as National Senior Citizen’s Law Center, National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, the Center for Medicare Advocacy, and CMS to provide over arching recommendations on how to improve state proposals across the country. Dual-eligibles are among the most vulnerable people in our society, and all of our organizations are committed to protecting them while we work to improve their health care. I am truly proud of all the work our team is doing and am glad to take this opportunity to fill you in on these recent accomplishments.
Source: blogspot.com

2013 Medicare Drug Plan Premiums Will Be Similar To This Year — On Average

“Some folks won’t have access to plans at this price,” said Joe Baker, president of the Medicare Rights Center, a consumer advocacy group. “The bigger issue is that seniors have too much choice, or too much non-meaningful choice.” Seniors, he said, “tend to go for lower premiums, which look more affordable, but they can be surprised when their drug isn’t in the formulary.”
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Getting Answers To Your Health Coverage Questions

Health coverage can be confusing. Over the past decade, the number of coverage choices has increased. Television, mail, and the Internet now bring us an overwhelming amount of information, and it’s not always reliable. So where can you turn for personalized, unbiased help with health insurance problems? Fortunately, there are free resources in every community that can provide you (or a loved one) with individualized counseling and assistance.
Source: smmirror.com

Marci’s Medicare Answers, www.MedicareRights.org

Dear Alfred, If you do not enroll in the Medicare prescription drug benefit (Part D) when you first become eligible, and you choose to enroll at a later date, you may have to pay a premium penalty. The premium penalty will be 1 percent for every month you delay enrollment (1 percent of the national base beneficiary premium). For example, the national base beneficiary premium in 2012 is $31.08 a month. If you delayed enrollment for seven months, your monthly premium penalty would be $2.18 ($31.08 x 1% = $0.3108 x 7 = $2.18), which will be added to your plan’s monthly premium.
Source: homeboundresources.com

Health care court ruling could paralyze Medicare

Last year, 3.6 million seniors hit the gap and saved a collective $2.1 billion due to the health care law, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. In the first four months of 2012, more than 416,000 people saved an average of $724 on prescription drugs bought after they hit the cap, for a total of $301.5 million. Last year, 3.6 million seniors entered the gap and saved $2.1 billion, the health department says.
Source: msnbc.com

Be Financially Free With a Partnership Qualified Policy

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Owners of Partnership policies can also enjoy comprehensive coverage. This means that they can acquire care in any type of LTC setting that will suit their health care needs. For instance, at the onset of care they might choose to stay home and avail home health aide and homemaker services. But as their health condition advances to the next level or stage a nursing home might become necessary and they will not have any problem entering this facility because it is also included in their coverage.
Source: articles-digest.com

Video: What documents do I need before we proceed with a Medicaid application?

Kids in Texas Might be Covered by CHIP

There are limitations on who can apply for Children’s Medicaid. “Any adult who lives more than half the time with an uninsured child may apply. This includes parents, stepparents, grandparents, other relatives, legal guardians, or adult brothers or sisters”. Anyone who is 19 or younger, and who lives on their own, can apply. “A pregnant person” of any age can apply for CHIP perinatal services for her unborn child. She can also apply for Medicaid for herself.
Source: families.com

Texas Dentist Indicted In Alleged Medicaid Scheme

Investigators say the Amarillo orthodontist billed the government program for more services than provided or for unnecessary procedures. The time frame of the scheme was during 2008 through March of 2011.
Source: news92fm.com

How Romney and Ryan Plan to Close Your Family Planning Clinic

Title X was established in 1970 to provide birth control and preventative health services to millions of men and women across the US, regardless of income or insurance status. In 2010, clinics funded by Title X performed over 6 million Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD) tests, according to STD awareness organizations. Planned Parenthood alone provides care to about one-third of Title X patients. And some studies show that Title X family planning actually saves taxpayers money—according to Guttmacher Institute, which promotes reproductive rights worldwide, in the US "every $1.00 invested in helping women avoid pregnancies they did not want to have saved $3.74 in Medicaid expenditures."
Source: motherjones.com

Study: Medicare contractors vulnerable to conflict

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the federal agency overseeing Medicare, said in a statement that it has a robust program for identifying potential conflicts among providers and that it has taken the proper steps to vet these contractors. Contract bidders who identify a potential conflict must submit a separate plan for how they will mitigate the issue, according to the agency, which added that it has not awarded deals to companies with significant conflicts of interest.
Source: publicintegrity.org

Video: Screw Medicare – Family Responsibility (Senator)

Romney podcast says Medicare was ‘raided’ to pay for health law

“Now if that wasn’t bad enough, his healthcare law also put in place a board of 15 unelected bureaucrats and gave them the power to make additional cuts to Medicare without even having to get approval from Congress,” Romney added. “This means they could deny elderly Americans the care they’ve worked for their entire lives – all because President Obama trusts bureaucrats more than he trusts seniors and their doctors.”
Source: thehill.com

Medicarehealthplan.org Estimated Value N/A

Access to .ORG WHOIS information is provided to assist persons in determining the contents of a domain name registration record in the Public Interest Registry registry database. The data in this record is provided by Public Interest Registry for informational purposes only, and Public Interest Registry does not guarantee its accuracy. This service is intended only for query-based access. You agree that you will use this data only for lawful purposes and that, under no circumstances will you use this data to: (a) allow, enable, or otherwise support the transmission by e-mail, telephone, or facsimile of mass unsolicited, commercial advertising or solicitations to entities other than the data recipient’s own existing customers; or (b) enable high volume, automated, electronic processes that send queries or data to the systems of Registry Operator, a Registrar, or Afilias except as reasonably necessary to register domain names or modify existing registrations. All rights reserved. Public Interest Registry reserves the right to modify these terms at any time. By submitting this query, you agree to abide by this policy. Domain ID:D157505683-LROR Domain Name:MEDICAREHEALTHPLAN.ORG Created On:03-Nov-2009 16:58:13 UTC Last Updated On:24-Oct-2011 10:07:23 UTC Expiration Date:03-Nov-2012 16:58:13 UTC Sponsoring Registrar:Moniker Online Services LLC (R145-LROR) Status:CLIENT DELETE PROHIBITED Status:CLIENT TRANSFER PROHIBITED Status:CLIENT UPDATE PROHIBITED Registrant ID:MONIKER21427 Registrant Name:Jeff Registrant Organization:MJ Direct Registrant Street1:38505 mcdowell dr Registrant Street2: Registrant Street3: Registrant City:solon Registrant State/Province:OH Registrant Postal Code:44139 Registrant Country:US Registrant Phone:+1.2167028144 Registrant Phone Ext.: Registrant FAX:+1.4402488886 Registrant FAX Ext.: Registrant Email:jlevy@mjdirectconsulting.com Admin ID:MONIKER21427 Admin Name:Jeff Admin Organization:MJ Direct Admin Street1:38505 mcdowell dr Admin Street2: Admin Street3: Admin City:solon Admin State/Province:OH Admin Postal Code:44139 Admin Country:US Admin Phone:+1.2167028144 Admin Phone Ext.: Admin FAX:+1.4402488886 Admin FAX Ext.: Admin Email:jlevy@mjdirectconsulting.com Tech ID:MONIKER21427 Tech Name:Jeff Tech Organization:MJ Direct Tech Street1:38505 mcdowell dr Tech Street2: Tech Street3: Tech City:solon Tech State/Province:OH Tech Postal Code:44139 Tech Country:US Tech Phone:+1.2167028144 Tech Phone Ext.: Tech FAX:+1.4402488886 Tech FAX Ext.: Tech Email:jlevy@mjdirectconsulting.com Name Server:NS673.WEBSITEWELCOME.COM Name Server:NS674.WEBSITEWELCOME.COM Name Server: Name Server: Name Server: Name Server: Name Server: Name Server: Name Server: Name Server: Name Server: Name Server: Name Server: DNSSEC:Unsigned
Source: widestat.com

The Bogus Attack on Paul Ryan’s Medicare Plan

But of course they do. And it’s hard to imagine any politician who understands the basic arithmetic of the program not at least stopping to pay lip service to the need to revamp it. In fact, Obama himself has said that “with an aging population and rising health care costs, we are spending too fast to sustain the program. And if we don’t gradually reform the system while protecting current beneficiaries, it won’t be there when future retirees need it.” No kidding.

 Ryan has answered the president’s call and proposed an approach to updating the program that attempts to bring its costs under control by exposing it to the market forces that have helped keep prices low and quality high in so many other domains. Scary stuff, no?
Source: reason.com

Paul Ryan and the Real Enemy of Medicare

Among those favoring such changes is Alice Rivlin of the Brookings Institution, who was President Bill Clinton’s budget director. The premium support model embraced by Ryan, she testified before Congress in April, “seeks to combine the tools of market competition and cost-effective regulation in hopes of maximizing the chances of improving health care for seniors at a sustainable cost.”
Source: reason.com

Obama slams Romney, Ryan on tax rates, Medicare in stops in New Hampshire

This entry was posted on Saturday, August 18th, 2012 at 9:28 PM and is filed under 21, AMA, America, American, Americans, art, Barack Obama, benefits, book, border, BP, CIA, DC, economy, EPA, EU, Facebook, GE, GI, hp, Medicare, middle-class, News, Obama, paul ryan, politics, President, President Obama, Public, red, Republican, Romney, Ryan, state, tax, tax breaks, twitter, UK, UN, US, Washington, we, wealth, wealthy. You can follow any responses to this entry through the
Source: heave-ho.org

Daily Kos: HuffPo: Wisconsin TV station refuses to air anti

Yes, better ads could be made.  But no one wants to see what no money looks like for fragile, pain wracked elderly  with harried, strained children who barely make enough to have a home or apartment and what real poverty surrounding the family really looks like.   It’s shame and failure and suffering most of us won’t look at. It’s wishing to die so the horror ends and maybe not being able to die quite quickly enough.  It is knowing that money could and would make a huge difference to the suffering, but it’s more important that the rich have golf courses in their back yards and car elevators.   It is what the Mitt Romney’s and Paul Ryan’s of this world never see.  It is what they ought to see and then tell those people they deserve to suffer like that for all their moral failings.  
Source: dailykos.com

Medicare Audits on Prosthetic devices

So the second question is: why aren’t doctors following Medicare guidelines when prescribing prosthetic devices?  For discussion purposes let’s assume all physicians are aware of this requirement; which 99.9% are unaware.  Over the past 20 years the US healthcare system has slowly moved away from a general practice platform to a system where physicians specialize in one subset of healthcare.  When a physician specializes he/she generally relies on other physicians to treat conditions outside of their specialty.  So when a patient needs a prosthetic device the physician will rely on a prosthetist to take care of the patient knowing he/she is the specialist in prosthetics. Now lets compound the problem with the fact that physicians are being paid less by all insurers (including Medicare), forcing them to see more patients per hour while spending less time with each patient.  From what I have seen and been told, most physicians today spend less than 10 minutes with each patient.  Medicare’s policy in prescribing prosthetic devices requires the physician to conduct a thorough evaluation that takes at least 20 minutes to conduct, if he/she knows what they are doing.  It is just not reasonable to expect that physicians, under increased pressure in today’s healthcare environment, are going to take more time to conduct a thorough evaluation to prescribe a device he/she knows nothing about.  By today’s standards, physicians want to do what comes natural, refer the patient to the prosthetic specialist.  I have even had a few physicians tell me that they don’t get paid enough to do this thorough evaluation and the documentation required by Medicare when prescribing a prosthesis.  Clarifying “it’s not my job, it’s yours.”
Source: advancedprostheticscenter.com

Why Romney’s Medicare Taxes Are So Low

How did he manage this trick? The key is that investment income, which made up 97% of Romney’s total income in 2010, is not subject to payroll taxes that pay for Medicare or Social Security. That means he only paid Medicare taxes on his speaking and directing fees. If Romney had paid the full Medicare tax rate on all of his income, he would have paid about $628,000. Instead he paid $15,908.
Source: progressivepolicy.org

Daily Kos: Ryan’s REAL Medicare Disaster for Future Seniors

Mimikatz, TXdem, Chi, XOVER, irmaly, TrueBlueMajority, NYmom, emal, Reino, Susan Gardner, Emerson, TheGreatLeapForward, Shockwave, Heimyankel, cotterperson, hyperstation, jdld, akeitz, eeff, Mnemosyne, Pompatus, Richard Cranium, devtob, SallyCat, dweb8231, bdizz, geordie, bronte17, sponson, fugwb, jem6x, whenwego, ask, Malixe, bwren, rioduran, tidalwave1, emmasnacker, leevank, laughingriver, wdrath, mnguitar, dufffbeer, Timbuk3, ybruti, Sembtex, JayDean, bibble, ExStr8, maybeeso in michigan, marina, denise b, UncleCharlie, revbludge, chimene, stagemom, Brooke In Seattle, Fury, Ice Blue, blue jersey mom, deep, SBandini, Ginny in CO, zozie, kathny, Jim R, RJDixon74135, Born in NOLA, martini, kovie, redcedar, hungrycoyote, tonyahky, VictorLaszlo, Son of a Cat, blueoasis, tapestry, MBNYC, rage, JugOPunch, sea note, DBunn, Thinking Fella, phonegery, Ken in MN, Cronesense, AdamSelene, Dartagnan, gloriana, Positronicus, Mary Mike, Blue Waters Run Deep, terabytes, bearian, newpioneer, bnasley, carpunder, uciguy30, leonard145b, BasharH, VA Breeze, JDWolverton, JeffW, gfv6800, wayoutinthestix, elwior, jamess, Calamity Jean, rssrai, Cassandra Waites, Jeff Y, Horsefeathers, venger, CA coastsider, Fiddlegirl, litoralis, nchristine, banjolele, Carol in San Antonio, eltee, Zotz, dfe, shopkeeper, petral, geebeebee, elziax, papahaha, sfarkash, Tortmaster, jan0080, Lefty Ladig, BlueOak, oceanrain, confitesprit, KroneckerD, one love, eXtina, estreya, jethrock, cishart, womankind, batchick, pixxer, ItsSimpleSimon, sharonsz, cocinero, Anne was here, cany, theKgirls, TAH from SLC, kerflooey, Powell, Bob Duck, slowbutsure, vahana, Teknocore, OhioNatureMom, Nicci August, smiley7, marleycat, Jasonhouse, muddy boots, Coastrange, SueM1121, peregrine kate, bluedust, sound of progress, Caddis Fly, jolux, Lucy2009, Auriandra, ParkRanger, Davui, ArtemisBSG, Only Needs a Beat, Liberal Granny, Heart n Mind, leathersmith, cwsmoke, Siri, joanil, congenitalefty, This old man, Mr Robert, BusyinCA, Olkate, MartyM, srlaserguy, aznavy, cassandracarolina, james321, arizonablue, OooSillyMe, Villanova Rhodes, LiberalMegan, Melanie in IA, nuclear winter solstice, Illinois IRV, Late Again, life is making tacos, alice kleeman, MarEng, paccoli, howabout, Icicle68, BitterEnvy, Hey338Too, Grizzard
Source: dailykos.com

Medicare Part D and Dual Eligibles: Prescription Drug Formularies and Drugs Used by Dual Eligibles

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Canada Army Run 2011: local results, photos (Part D) by ianhun2009Medicare drug plans may exclude drugs from formularies or may control drug use in an effort to contain costs, but they must meet certain criteria in doing so.  Each PDP and MA-PD drug formulary is reviewed by staff in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).  Generally, Part D plan formularies must cover at least two drugs in every theraputic class.  Under CMS rules, Part D formularies must also include all or substantially all drugs in six protected classes: immunosuppressant (for prophylaxis of organ transplant rejection), antidepressant, antipsychotic, anticonvulsant, antiretroviral, and antineoplastic drugs.
Source: piperreport.com

Video: Let’s Play Kingdom Hearts 3D Dream Drop Distance 3DS – Part 1

Florida Elder Law and Estate Planning: Medicare Part D premium to remain unchanged in 2013

The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services has also announced that since the establishment of the Affordable Care Act, seniors and the disabled collecting Medicare benefits have saved nearly $4billion in prescription drug costs. In 2012, beneficiaries in the “doughnut hole” saved 50% on brand-name prescription drugs and 14% on generic prescription drugs. Under the law, the doughnut hole will gradually decrease through 2020, when the coverage gap disappears entirely.
Source: blogspot.com

Northborough: Medicare Part D for seniors program

Whitney Place Assisted Living, 238 West Main St., Northborough, will host Colleen Massey, M.S. with Tim Aungst Sept. 27 on “Get A+ info on Part D.” Changes to Medicare Part D are coming in 2012 and you’ll want to make your best choice from among some often-confusing options. Come learn about the prescription drug coverage program, and how the changes may affect the way you get your medications. Tours and light refreshments from 5:30 to 6 p.m., followed by the presentation from 6 to 7 p.m. To register or for more information, call Trish Pope at 508-351-9013 ext. 261.
Source: communityadvocate.com

RFP : Medicare Part D Preferred Prescription Drug Plan (PDP) Services in Maine, United States

The State has a requirement from Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plans (PDPs) to support the Low Cost Drug Program for the Elderly and Disabled (DEL) State Pharmacy Assistance Program (SPAP) and the Medical Savings Program (MSP) in providing benefits to its Medicare Part D eligible members. Primary services include coordinating payment by OMS of member monthly premiums, enrollment and pharmacy data exchange, customer service for OMS and its contracted representatives and adherence to clinical requirements specific to OMS contracts. In accordance with State procurement practices, the Department is hereby announcing the publication of a Request for Proposals (RFP) # 201208366 for the purchase of the aforementioned services.
Source: rfpdb.com

Paying for Medicare Part D

*NOTE: This data is believed to be accurate as of 06/2012, but not guaranteed. For specific, up to date information, contact Medicare or your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), if applicable. This chart is just a “model” for Medicare Part D (PDP) coverage. Actual insurance plans can differ greatly so be sure to shop and compare closely and have any current prescriptions readily available.
Source: seniorliving.net

Medicare Part D Average Premium Rates Will Not Increase in 2013, HHS Announces

“Millions of Medicare beneficiaries continue to have affordable access to the medicines they need.  The fact that Medicare premiums are, on average, remaining steady for the third consecutive year is a blessing to elderly and disabled Americans with fixed incomes.  These affordable premiums are further confirmation of consumers’ power to drive value.  By being able to choose a plan that best meets their medication needs at a price they can afford, Medicare beneficiaries are making plans compete on the basis of value.  It’s an approach that continues to work.
Source: hlc.org

PhRMA Statement on Medicare Part D Premiums

“For example, a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) showed that improved access and adherence to medicines driven by Part D saves Medicare about $1,200 per beneficiary in hospital, skilled nursing facility and other costs for each senior who previously lacked comprehensive prescription drug coverage. A study by researchers at Harvard Medical School found that nearly 11 million seniors gained comprehensive prescription drug coverage as a result of Part D. Together, these findings show overall savings to Medicare equaled over $13 billion in 2007, the first full year of Part D. This represents more than one quarter of Part D’s total cost during that time.
Source: pittsburghhealthcarereport.com

The WSJ editorial page and Paul Ryan’s Medicare plan : CJR

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Rogue Magazine (October 1964)  Volume 9 Number 5 - Water Balloons ...item 1.. routinely use devious devices -- wears us down like rabid trial lawyers until we give in (August 15, 2011 / 15 Av 5771) ... by marsmet542Thank you, Ryan. There’s no good evidence that competition between private health plans has controlled health care costs. That’s the fundamental assumption of the Ryan-Romney Medicare voucher proposal and it’s unfounded. Supporters say the Medicare Part D experience shows that competition between private Part D drug plans has kept costs lower than expected. But there are a number of problems with that argument. The lack of development of major new brand name drugs has slowed drug cost increases. And the government backstops the Part D plans to such an extent that it’s not a true competitive market. It’s not comparable to comprehensive health plans competing and taking full financial risk for the Medicare population. Of course the Affordable Care Act’s state health insurance exchanges also are premised partly on the idea of private plans competing and holding down costs, and that assumption is problematic too.
Source: cjr.org

Video: You Can Help Fight Medicare Fraud

Study: Medicare contractors vulnerable to conflict

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the federal agency overseeing Medicare, said in a statement that it has a robust program for identifying potential conflicts among providers and that it has taken the proper steps to vet these contractors. Contract bidders who identify a potential conflict must submit a separate plan for how they will mitigate the issue, according to the agency, which added that it has not awarded deals to companies with significant conflicts of interest.
Source: publicintegrity.org

Several Californians among the most wanted for health fraud

One Southern California man sent recruiters to pressure elderly people into accepting power wheelchairs so he could bill Medicare. A Los Angeles woman is accused of laundering millions of dollars in fraudulent Medicare payments through jewelry stores after ordering walkers and canes for dead people. And a crew in and around Sacramento billed Medicare for running blood tests on each other and paid patients $100 to come to clinics.
Source: californiawatch.org

The Medicare Mirage 

Voters need to know three things about Ryan’s Medicare reform proposal co-sponsored with Oregon Democrat Ron Wyden. First, no one over the age of 55 would be affected in any way. Second, traditional Medicare fee-for-service would remain available for all. “Premium support”—that is, government funding of private insurance plans chosen by individuals—is an option for those who choose it. No senior would be forced out of the traditional Medicare program against his will. And third, overall funding for Medicare under the Ryan-Wyden plan is scheduled to grow at the same rate as under President Obama’s proposals. Is this “gutting Medicare” and “ending Medicare as we know it”? In reality, it’s the market giving seniors cheaper, higher quality choices they can take if they wish, with the traditional program remaining an option. (Source: The Moderate Voice)
Source: usdailyreview.com

Romney’s lies about Medicare debunked by PolitiFact

Under Ryan’s original plan, Medicare would have changed from a program that pays doctors and hospitals fees for particular services to one in which beneficiaries would be paid an amount by the government that they could use toward private insurance premiums. This would have affected people who today are under 55 only. The private plans would comply with standards set by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, which administers the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program. Ryan has since offered updated versions of the plan, the first in conjunction with Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and then as part of his fiscal year 2013 budget proposal. …We agree that in the world of policy wonks, there are distinctions between "vouchers" and "premium support," having to do with the type of inflation adjustment used and the degree of marketplace regulation imposed. Compared with his original plan, Ryan’s most recent plan does move closer to fitting the definition of pure premium support. But substantively, it’s still somewhere in between the two approaches.
Source: blogs.com

The Facts of Ryan’s Medicare Plan

Now, that’s it.  What I just told you is it.  That’s Ryan’s Medicare reform.  And as far as people over 55 are concerned, the same dollars are spent by Ryan’s plan as at present, same dollars.  Nothing is cut in Medicare spending for people over 55.  In fact, the criticism of the Ryan budget on the right is that it takes too long to balance.  It’s 30 years.  It doesn’t balance ’til you get to 2040.  And the reason for that is gradual. Get on the right track is all that needs to happen.  Like Ryan and Romney winning the election.  I guarantee you, if Ryan and Romney win the election you’re gonna see the stock market go through the roof. You’re gonna see small businesses start to hire. It’s gonna happen so fast you won’t believe it, the moment it’s known that Obama’s out of office.  One of the reasons why the evolution of the Ryan plan is as long as it is, is to keep people from panicking and getting frightened.  This is actually a plan that deals with people who aren’t gonna be accessing this program for 30 years, when you get right down to it.
Source: rushlimbaugh.com

The American Spectator : The Spectacle Blog : Obama, a Tweet, and Medicare

Since Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) became the GOP nominee for Vice President, the future of Medicare has gone from being an important secondary issue to the issue most mainstream pundits (and both campaigns) are talking about. The Romney campaign has released an ad hammering Obama over his Medicare cuts, liberals and conservatives alike have gone after the Obama and Romney campaigns, and the Obama campaign Twitter feed seems to only stop talking about Medicare and the Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act (Affordable Care Act) when it wants to talk about how bad Ryan and Romney are for women.
Source: spectator.org

Meaning of the letters after a Social Security or Medicare number

The Social Security number followed by one of these codes is often referred to as a claim number.  We assign these codes once you apply for benefits.  These letter codes may appear on correspondence you receive from Social Security or on your Medicare card.  They will never appear on a Social Security card.
Source: seniorsavingsnetwork.org

Sacred Cow Wursthaus: Robbing Medicare? Part II

In a previous recent blog post, I argued why the Health Care Reform law was essential due to its cessation of fraud and abuse. I cited a 60 Minutes report from 2010 showing how $60 billion per year was going straight into the pockets of fraudulent claims set up by organized crime circuits. I did not, however, realize two things: One, there was more than just fraud going on. If one counts waste, abuse and inefficiency of Medicare, the number easily exceeds $70 billion. And two, I also didn’t realize that the Romney campaign’s claim of $700 billion “robbed” from Medicare “to pay for Obamacare,” is a projection over 10 years. Previous projections were made out to several years, which is where the $500 billion claim previously came from. Project it out to ten years, and it comes to $700 billion. Well, this is now the third time I’ve had to amend that post. (That’ll teach me to go off half-cocked.) So here’s what I should have said then: Take that over-$70-billion that Obamacare saves by putting a stop to the organized criminals stealing from the Medicare system, as well as the wasteful inefficiencies within it, and project that out ten years. There’s your $716 billion dollars! That amount, which Romney and his cronies are claiming Obama robbed to pay for Romneycare II, is actually money that Obama stole back from Medicare thieves! I have no problem with Obama stealing back $700 billion from Medicare crooks to pay for “Obamacare.” Do you? Politifact did issue its evaluation of this particular claim of Mitt Romney’s campaign. It rated it mostly false. But it didn’t go far enough in realizing just how much criminality was policed by Healthcare Reform, and how the dollar amount saved in this way matches the $700 billion quote almost perfectly. Well, Politifact should have rated this one as ‘Pants on Fire!’ But my evaluation of Politifact will have to be a different blog post. Eric *
Source: blogspot.com