How to know when an Insurance Supplement to Medicare is Appropriate

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Gravel MediGap by Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.comWhat an insurance supplement to Medicare or Medigap policy can do is to offset some or most of those costs. That can make the difference between financial hardships at a time when a person is their most vulnerable. However, purchasing a Medigap policy is not a foregone conclusion. The additional premium payments for Medigap policies are expensive especially for those people who are on fixed incomes. Thus, the question becomes how do I know when an insurance supplement to Medicare is right for me? The answer is not easy. Obviously, if a person were allowed to purchase a supplement only when they needed it the answer would be obvious. However, insurance companies will subject an applicant to underwriting before a policy is issued them to deny coverage for pre-existing conditions. Thus, a person should purchase their Medicare supplement when acceptance is guaranteed and that is during the six month open enrollment period when a person turns 65 and has applied for Medicare coverage.
Source: seniorcorps.org

Video: High-End Medigap Plans Offered at Basic Plan Rates

The best place to Look for Medigap Rates?

Medicare gain options like a PPO or HMO are fashions to have benefits from Medicare in contrast to Medigap policies exclusively nutritional supplement the main advantages of Medicare insurance policy. While, marketed and offered by simply non-public businesses, Medigap policies will have to adhere to legal guidelines developed by State and federal government.
Source: blogspot.com

Medicare: Private Insurers Not Always Cheaper

Robert Zirkelbach, spokesman for that group pointed to the fact that, on average, the bids submitted by Medicare Advantage insurers are only 98% of what it would cost traditional Medicare. And he noted that insurers have put in measures aimed at further reducing expenses, such as reminding patients to follow up with doctors and fill their prescription orders, as well as coordinating care for seniors with multiple ailments.
Source: turnto23.com

3 Things Most Medigap Policies Won't Cover

So, you’ve decided to shop around for Medigap policies, huh? Congratulations! Having a Medigap policy is the best way to make sure you don’t get left holding the bag when your Medicare benefits run out.
Source: ezyspot.com

Medigap Plans the Needful Accessory With Medicare Original
by

William Jones Richards

Since their standardization in 1992 there had been twelve Medigap plans named A through L. These plans are a good deal of help not just only to provide the necessary coverage for the gap left by the Original Medicare but besides that these plans also provide several profitable options and some of them are even capable to cut short the premium rates. And therefore it becomes essential to make the choice of the Medicare supplement plan wisely so that you can get the best returns. In this respect it should be kept in mind that the Medigap policies can only be sold along with the original Medicare only. Even if you are having a Medicare supplement plan and you switch over to any other plan, say for example the Medicare Advantage plan, you shall not be able to use the benefits of the Medigap policies any farther unless you switch back to the Medicare Original plan. In fact this is the main criteria needed to get enrolled for the Medigap policies.
Source: topmedicareinsurance.com

Using Medigap As A Medicare Supplement

To purchase a Medigap policy you must currently have Part A and Part B of government coverage. When an individual has an Advantage Plans but wants to go back to the government provided insurance, they can apply for a Medigap policy before their coverage stops. Medigap policies E, H, I and J are not longer offered for sale. When enrolled in one of these plans, you will be able to keep it as long as you continue to make all of the required payments.
Source: temecularealestateinfo.com

Use Medigap For A Medicare Supplement

Individuals must have Part A and Part B for their government insurance, to be eligible to purchase a Medigap policy. However, someone who currently has an Advantage Plan can return to government coverage if they apply for a policy before their current coverage ends. Insurance companies no longer offer plans E, H, I, and J for sale to customers. However, if individuals currently have a discontinued plan, then it can be kept as long as payments are maintained.
Source: comparingcarinsurance.org

Test Info Blog ITC Controll: Using Medigap As A Medicare Supplement

When you are looking for a viable Medicare supplement, an available option is to use Medigap. A Medigap policy is private health insurance coverage used to supplement your original Medicare coverage. Costs that Medicare does not cover will be paid by Medigap. If both Medicare and Medigap coverage is available, all eligible costs are paid first by government coverage. Any remaining eligible costs will be paid for from your Medigap policy. The Medigap policy only acts as a supplement to your original insurance benefits. A Medigap policy is required to follow laws that have been set at Federal and state government levels. All polices that are sold from any health insurance company need to follow these laws. Standardized policies are typically sold by insurance companies that are designated by letters A through N. Policies will provide the same coverage benefits not matter where they are purchased. The main difference between each type of policy is price. Available coverage for a specific Medigap policy will vary based on type. When government benefits have been depleted, all Medigap policies provide payments for coinsurance coverage and up to 365 additional days for hospital stays. In addition any co-payments and coinsurance for Part B are also covered. The first three pints of blood for a transfusion are also covered as are the co-payments and coinsurance for any hospice care. Medigap policies also have exclusions for certain coverage. Nursing homes stays that are considered long term care are not covered, Also not covered in a policy are hearing aids, eyeglasses, vision, and dental care. These costs are paid by government coverage. Individuals who are currently enrolled in government-run Prescription Drug Plans, are on state Medicaid, or an Advantage Plan, do not have a Medigap policy. Your health insurance company is not required to offer all types of Medigap policies. This means that health insurance companies can offer a different type of policy selection to their customers. However, a Plan A Medigap policy needs to be provided if any other type of policy is being offered. Health insurance companies must also provide customers access to Medigap Plans A, C, and F. States are free to determine which types of Medigap policies are available to customers. You must currently be enrolled in Part A and Part B of government coverage to buy a Medigap policy. If you want to go back to government insurance when you have an Advantage Plan, you need to apply for a policy before the end of your coverage period. Currently a Medigap policy having the letters E, H, I, and J are no longer being sold. However, individuals can keep these plans as long as the monthly payments continue to be made. People having a Medicare supplement will pay their insurance company for the monthly premium. You will also need to pay the monthly premium for Medicare Part B. One person is covered by a policy. If you are married, you and your spouse will require separate policies. To cancel a Medigap policy you need to inform your insurance company in writing. They will not cancel a Medigap policy over the phone.
Source: blogspot.com

Learning How To Rate Your Medigap Policies

When you have narrowed down on the type of Medigap insurance you should start shopping around for the best prices. You will be able to notice that there is a wide variation between the prices quoted by different companies. Your monthly premium will also depend on your individual situation and vary from one individual to the other just exactly how it works with the regular insurance plans. For example if you are a smoker, then you are likely to pay much higher premiums than your counterparts that do not smoke. The cost of the premium also varies depending on the gender. Female applicants pay lesser monthly premium for the Medicare supplemental insurance.
Source: medicarequotefinderblog.com

Compare Quotes on Medicare Supplement Insurance

Each plan, A through L, has a different set of benefits. Each insurance company decides for itself which of the A through L policies it wants to sell. An insurance company must, however, sell plan A if it sells any other Medicare supplement insurance plan. The benefits in plans A through L vary, but they are the same for any insurance company. That is, plan A has a different set of benefits from plan B, but plan A has the same benefits no matter who sells it. However, different insurance companies can charge different premiums. So, while plan A has the same benefits no matter who sells it, different insurance companies can charge different premiums for a plan A policy.
Source: org.uk

Saving Money on Medigap Policies: High

If you buy Medigap Plan F with a high-deductible option, you must pay the first $2,070 (in 2012) of deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance not paid by Medicare before the Medigap policy pays anything. You must also pay a separate deductible ($250 per year) for foreign travel emergency services. This can be scary and intimidating, but if you don’t have to go to the doctor often it could save you money.
Source: medicaresupplementinsurances.com

Medicare Part D Coverage Gap

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Basilique Saint-Pierre-et-Saint-Paul d'Andlau by kristobaliteGary Phillips is a licensed insurance agent based in western North Carolina. He specializes in the senior market and is knowledgeable in multiple insurance lines including Medicare, Medigap, Long-Term Care, Part D Prescription Drugs, Part C Medicare Advantage, Health, Life and Final Expense insurance. He also enjoys writing and helping others. www.bizpartner.homestead.com
Source: seniorliving.net

Video: HUSBAND TAG PART 2! (Babies, Pony Dance, Future Plans)

What Happens to Your Medicare Benefits When You Move Abroad?

Luckily, plans that offer medical insurance abroad are tailored to permanent and part-time residents of international locations, offer some portability for retirees who wish to travel and are both affordable and flexible. These plans allow a retiree to not only select a limit and deductible that is reasonable for their budget but also to choose coverage options that go well beyond just providing medical treatment. Some plans allow benefits for repatriation of remains and emergency medical evacuation as well as providing the usual overage for prescriptions, hospital stays and more.
Source: nyig.com

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

What Are Medicare Part D Plans?

Insurers that offer Medicare Part D plans differ by region. The types of drugs covered and associated costs also vary greatly. Medicare recipients are usually required to pay a deductible. After the deductible is reached, recipients pay a certain percentage of the costs, up to a capped amount. Once the cap is hit, the recipient is responsible for all drug costs until the recipient reaches a catastrophic limit. The coverage gap after hitting the capped amount and before reaching the catastrophic limit is commonly referred to as the “donut hole.” Even though most people choose PDPs rather than MA-PDs, the advantage of choosing an MA-PD is that some MA-PD plans offer coverage to protect against the gap. The simplest way to find Medicare Part D plans and compare costs and drug coverage, including gap coverage, is to use the Medicare Plan Finder on Medicare.gov.
Source: seniorcorps.org

Mississippi Medicare Part D Plans

Annual open enrollment for Part D begins on October 15th and continues through December 7th. If you submit an application during the enrollment period and feel that you have found a better plan, you can submit another application as long as you are still with that enrollment period.
Source: partdplanfinder.com

MedicareIsSimple: First Indicator of 2013 Part D Bids: Very Aggressive

It isn’t often when three leading actuaries who work with Medicare Advantage and Part D plans all say they were “surprised” by a key bid-data measure released by CMS. But this is what happened Aug. 6, when the agency reported a $79.64 figure for the Part D national average monthly bid amount for 2013. That figure is a weighted average of the standardized bid amounts for each stand-alone Prescription Drug Plan (PDP) and MA prescription drug (MD-PD) plan and is down from $84.50 in 2012. While all three actuaries I queried had expected some decline, they all acknowledged not expecting anything like the nearly 6% drop CMS unveiled.
Source: blogspot.com

Medicare, Medicaid and the Ryan Budget Plan: Get the Facts

After analyzing of the 2012 Ryan budget plan, the Congressional Budget Office concluded

What Happens To My Medicaid When I Enroll In Medicare?

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 CareMedicare and Medicaid are two health care programs created as amendments to the Social Security Act in 1965. Medicare is a federal insurance program that provides health insurance to U.S. citizens who are over the age of 65, under 65 with disabilities, and who have end stage kidney disease. Medicaid is both funded federally and by the states. States have different Medicaid programs for different groups of people such as the elderly, children, pregnant women, etc. Medicaid programs differ by state. It is possible to enroll in Medicare while receiving Medicaid.
Source: seniorcorps.org

Video: How To Apply For Medicaid

CMS issues final rule for Stage 2 of EHR Incentive Program

Today, HHS’ Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and HHS’ Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT released final requirements for stage 2 that hospitals and health care providers must meet in order to qualify for incentives during the second stage of the program, and criteria that electronic health records must meet to achieve certification.
Source: emrdailynews.com

Medicare Health Plans for Seniors

Medicare health plans offer coverage for different parts under Medicare. Part A of Medicare helps in meeting expenses that you may incur during hospitalization in any of the listed medical facilities. Part A also covers expenses incurred towards hospitalization in a hospice. Even home health care is covered under Part A. Medicare Part B offers coverage for services like occupational therapy and physical therapy. At the same time it pays for doctor visits and outpatient care also. Part C refers to the various Medicare plans provided by the private players while Part D of Medicare refers to the drug coverage.
Source: lowriskhealthplans.com

Legal Ease: Who is eligible for Medicaid benefits?

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Source: fredericksburg.com

The Life and Times of One of the Wisconsin Working Poor

…absurd aspects of it concerns what are called “dual eligibles,” or people who qualify for Medicare because they are over 65, but also qualify for Medicaid because they are low income and disabled. For example, in Washington State where I live, a 62-65 year-old disabled person drawing early retirement Social Security and SSI (Supplemental Security Income) is automatically enrolled in Medicaid. The state pays 100% of the cost of prescriptions, and there are no co-pays for doctor visits, lab work, procedures, hospitalization, or anything. Health care is free. But when that person turns sixty-five he or she becomes a dual eligible and rather than getting improved or the same health care coverage, it gets worse. The state no longer pays for prescription drugs and under Medicare Part D, even with so-called “extra help,” there are still small co-pays for medications. However, since many of the people in this situation are taking a lot of medications and they barely have enough money to get by, there is no extra money for drugs. In the classic American “choice” (remember Republicans worship choice, except for women) the person gets to choose between medications and food. Other services provided by the state under Medicaid (like rides to medical appointments) also go away, unless an additional program can be found to pay for them. In short, a dual eligible goes from having comprehensive coverage to having fragmented coverage.
Source: crooksandliars.com

Center for American Progress

These opportunities must be pursued, however, only under circumstances that lead to better health outcomes for this group of particularly sick and poor individuals. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or CMS, which manages the two public health insurance programs at the Department of Health and Human Services, has two new avenues for improving care for dual eligibles. One is the new Federal Coordinated Health Care Office, which is charged with improving integration between the two programs, eliminating cost-shifting between Medicare and Medicaid, and improving quality of care. And the other is the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, which is charged with identifying a range of pilot projects related to the reform of health care payment and delivery systems, with particular emphasis on improving the coordination, quality and efficiency of care—steps that can benefit dual eligibles in particular.
Source: americanprogress.org

Health Care Plan Choices Severely Limited by Recommendations

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Sarah Palin does NOT Understand "Special Children"! by cobalt123The federal Affordable Care Act places limits on the deductibles allowed in Exchange plans of $2,000 for individuals and $4,000 for families. With an HSA, the employer or subscriber can select a higher deductible, but must make contributions sufficient to meet these limits if the plan is offered thorough the Exchange. In other words, a $2,500 deductible can be offered but only if the employer contributes at least $500 to the employee’s HSA. But the federal Employee Retirement and Insurance Security Act (ERISA) prohibits states from ordering employers to offer these HSA-type benefits. So the state cannot offer a state-mandated plan in the Exchange that matches the most popular plan design currently in the market.
Source: truenorthreports.com

Video: Obama’s Former Doctor Attacks Health Care Plan

Medicare, Health Policies Stay In Spotlight At Top Of The Ticket

NBC: Will The GOP’s Counter-Offensive On Medicare Be Enough? Anticipating having to play defense this fall on the issue of Medicare, Republicans have been preparing a strategy for the upcoming elections: punch back. And this strategy undoubtedly assumed more urgency after Mitt Romney selected Paul Ryan — the author of a Republican budget that overhauls the government-run health insurance program for seniors — as his running mate, which only elevated Medicare as a central issue in November. The Republican strategy entails accusing President Obama of cutting $716 billion from Medicare — and then, taking it a step further, by linking those cuts to paying for the president’s health care reform law (O’Brian, 8/23).
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

OPINION: Could nonprofit health insurance plans be the real reformers?

Kofman speaks from experience. The individual and small group marketplace in Maine was dominated by for-profit Anthem Blue Cross (a subsidiary of WellPoint) until the state selected nonprofit Harvard Pilgrim Health Care to provide coverage options for small businesses, individuals and self-employed residents through a public-private partnership called DirigoChoice — a precursor to the state exchanges — a few years ago. In 2004, Anthem had a 91 percent share of the individual market and a 68 percent share of the small business market. Five years later, Anthem’s share had dropped to 49 percent in both the individual and small business markets because of competition from Harvard Pilgrim.
Source: publicintegrity.org

New Zealand Gala Fundraiser

Short term medical insurance is good any unemployed person or anybody in between jobs, but only as long as he does not have pre-existing medical conditions. The insurance only covers major medical issues. Although regular maternity care is not included in the list, temporary medical insurance does cover situations brought about by pregnancy complications.
Source: chchfundraiser.com

Paul Ryan (R) and Ron Wyden (D) suggest limits on Medicare spending — The Background

Unfortunately, much of the country didn’t know what an HMO was. Doctors, hospitals and insurers were doing just fine under traditional Medicare’s fee-for-service system, so they resisted the opportunity to be part of an HMO. Fact is, the AMA had been fighting HMOs for decades in their historic battle against “corporate medicine.” Private HMOs like Physicians Health Plan in Minneapolis “went public for-profit,” began acquiring HMOs in other parts of the country, and is now UnitedHealth Group. BCBC non-profits converted and more than half of them nationally are now Wellpoint or other for-profit companies.
Source: stthomas.edu

Health coverage during disability leave

I’ll be going out on maternity leave soon.  I plan to stay out for the 12 weeks.  I’m covered by my employer’s health plan.  Is the company obligated to pay for my health insurance while I’m out on short-term disability leave?  I’m thinking about joining my husband’s plan so that I don’t lose my health insurance while I’m home with the baby.  There’s no way we could afford to have me not work for 12 weeks and pay for health insurance.
Source: bangordailynews.com

Find quotes on affordable temporary health insurance for individuals

Best short-term health insurance is a sort of fitness care treatment that’s obtainable for diminutive moment in time frames, most frequently 30 days to a year. In addition to the time outline, there are two other keys aspects of temporary health insurance that you don’t obtain from the given name:  Primary it’s more reasonably priced than paradigm reporting, and secondly it’s less comprehensive. In other prose, it’s a diminutive option rather than a long-term one. As such, it can work out very able-bodied for juvenile, hale and hearty recent grads that are job-hunting, flanked by jobs, or at this time functioning in a job that doesn’t offer insurance benefits. Another advantage is that a temporary health insurance plan can, in a quantity of luggage, lend a hand you uphold credible insurance reporting.  At a indispensable point, this earnings that you cannot be deprived of prospect insurance claims or disqualified for pre-existing circumstances formulate sure you confirm with the supplier before pretentious that the short-term guiding principle will maintain your plausible coverage.
Source: 2healthinsurance.net

Business Coalition offers HHS recommendations for consideration on Essential Health Benefits. What Does it Mean for Behavioral Health?

. The February “Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)” document indicates that HHS will prohibit annual dollar limits on any benefit, including state-mandated benefits, in the benchmark, although the FAQ indicates that health plans would be permitted to impose non-dollar limits that are at least actuarially equivalent to the annual dollar limits. To ensure that coverage remains affordable, the Coalition urges HHS to permit health plans to make a good faith determination of whether the benefits offered in the state benchmark, including state-mandated benefits, are essential (i.e., fall within the 10 statutorily-required essential health benefit categories). If a health plan determines in good faith that a benefit is not essential (does not fall into one of the 10 categories), the health plan may apply annual dollar limits on that benefit. If a health plan determines that a benefit is essential, the health plan may not apply annual dollar limits on that benefit.
Source: behavioralhealthtoday.com

Center for American Progress

Moreover, even when women can afford the high premiums, they are often denied coverage in whole or in part for gender-specific, so-called “pre-existing conditions” such as breast cancer, Cesarean sections, domestic violence, and rape. And when they are allowed to purchase a plan in the individual market, their money often does not buy them the coverage they need most. The same National Women’s Law Center study on gender rating found that 88 percent of plans in the individual health insurance market do not cover maternity care and the inadequate coverage leaves women paying much of the cost of labor and delivery out of pocket (the average cost of a healthy vaginal birth in the United States is over $8,000).
Source: americanprogress.org

Meeting Your Health Care Needs With Medicare Supplemental Insurance

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Joe the Plumber - To Flush The System ...More scams aim to ensnare Brevard seniors - Their ingenuity is boundless, Archer said. (Jul 2, 2012) ... by marsmet524The question remains though of how do you find out which Medicare supplemental policy will meet your needs while being cost effective on covering the extra expenses. Finding the information you need to help you make a decision about the policy and coverage best suited for you is very important. If you end up making the wrong decision about the coverage you choose you might find that you are not covered when you really need it. Thankfully there are companies available online that help you compare rates, view policy information and insurance companies without providing personal information.
Source: all-articles-directory.com

Video: What is a Medicare health insurance exchange?

Center for American Progress

What’s more, private plans could “cherry pick” healthier seniors, driving up premiums for those who remain in traditional Medicare. And private plans would be able to undercut traditional Medicare in other ways, such as by offering free gym memberships or other perks. As a result more and more seniors would gradually shift to private plans over time. This gradual privatization of Medicare does not make sense because traditional Medicare costs less than comparable private coverage. But with fewer beneficiaries Medicare would have less leverage to contain the growth in health care costs.
Source: americanprogress.org

Paul Ryan (R) and Ron Wyden (D) suggest limits on Medicare spending — The Background

Unfortunately, much of the country didn’t know what an HMO was. Doctors, hospitals and insurers were doing just fine under traditional Medicare’s fee-for-service system, so they resisted the opportunity to be part of an HMO. Fact is, the AMA had been fighting HMOs for decades in their historic battle against “corporate medicine.” Private HMOs like Physicians Health Plan in Minneapolis “went public for-profit,” began acquiring HMOs in other parts of the country, and is now UnitedHealth Group. BCBC non-profits converted and more than half of them nationally are now Wellpoint or other for-profit companies.
Source: stthomas.edu

Medicare Health Plans for Seniors

Medicare health plans offer coverage for different parts under Medicare. Part A of Medicare helps in meeting expenses that you may incur during hospitalization in any of the listed medical facilities. Part A also covers expenses incurred towards hospitalization in a hospice. Even home health care is covered under Part A. Medicare Part B offers coverage for services like occupational therapy and physical therapy. At the same time it pays for doctor visits and outpatient care also. Part C refers to the various Medicare plans provided by the private players while Part D of Medicare refers to the drug coverage.
Source: lowriskhealthplans.com

Looking For Health Insurance? Read This First!

When you have your health insurance through your employer make sure you check for grandfather exemptions. This is when there are small changes made to your insurance plan that are not subject to the provisions in the health reform law. This includes things such as free coverage for blood pressure screenings or depression. Your plan materials will tell you if it is grandfathered, and what that will entail.
Source: medicarecost.net

Why Protecting Medicare Matters

In the early years, it was clear the benefit of Medicare because, at that time, a higher proportion of people in their late 50s or early 60s were in poverty, and therefore lacked health insurance. As such, there was a significant impact from Medicare because people suddenly had access to quality insurance and health care they had not had before. Those impacts of Medicare are no longer as noticeable because other government programs, employer-based health insurance, etc. mean that far fewer people in their late 50s or early 60s lack insurance today than they did in the early 1960s. However, if people over the age of 65 suddenly started lacking the access to quality health insurance provided by Medicare, negative health impacts would almost certainly return, especially given that more and more people are losing the guarantee of health insurance previously provided by employers and pensions.
Source: addictinginfo.org

“Ryan Plan” would end today’s Medicare program

The Ryan/Republican budget plan would also convert Medicaid into a “block grant.” Instead of trying the cover the medical costs of those eligible for the program, the federal government would give the states a set amount of money to run their state Medicaid programs, that will slowly increase over time. Under this plan, the federal government will reduce spending on Medicaid by 35% over the next ten years. If all of this spending cut were done by restricting the number of people getting Medicaid, another 10 million people could lose their health insurance. In fact, the number would probably be smaller, because of cuts in benefits making it more difficult to find a doctor who takes Medicaid (many already do not because of the low reimbursement rate, which is only half or less of the amount paid to health care providers under Medicare for the elderly and disabled).
Source: fightbacknews.org

Fidelis Care Partners with Little Falls Hospital for Health Insurance …

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

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Source: medicinestore.in

Video: Election Debate with President Clinton and Robert Dole in Hartford, Connecticut (1996)

Prepared Patient® Forum: Is Choosing a Health Plan Like Buying a Car or Canned Goods?

That brings me to the problem of Medicare Advantage plans and the apparent wrong decisions millions of seniors are making.  The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), which runs the Medicare program, rates Medicare Advantage plans using a star system—the more the better.  The stars supposedly offer clues about plan quality including whether plan members get timely screenings and vaccinations and how how quickly they respond to complaints.  But a consulting firm, Avalere Health, did a little study and found that seniors choosing Medicare Advantage plans pick the ones with fewer stars, not more. Avalere said that nearly 50 percent of Medicare beneficiaries chose plans that merited only two or three stars.  The number may be higher.  CMS says that seniors pick plans based on costs and their ability to see a doctor they like, not ratings.
Source: preparedpatientforum.org

Fidelis adds urological surgeons to network

Fidelis Care, the New York State Catholic Health Plan, has added Capital Region Urological Surgeons PLLC to its provider network.   Capital Region Urological Surgeons, with 13 physicians and 2 nurse practitioners, has been providing urologic care in the Capital Region for nearly 30 years. The group’s specialties include urologic oncology, prostate disorders, kidney stone therapy, infertility, urinary incontinence and female urology. Offices are located in Albany and Saratoga Springs.
Source: timesunion.com

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Source: ctudi.com

insurance: MEDICARE ADVANTAGE/MEDICARE HEALTH PLANS

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Source: blogspot.com

Brooklyn’s Family Health & Wellness Guide (NY Metro Parents Magazine)

Challenge provides comprehensive developmental evaluations, speech/physical/occupational therapies, special instruction, vision therapy, nutrition, social work, family counseling/training, parent support groups, and service coordination for developmentally delayed infants and toddlers. We also provide home and center-based ABA services for children with diagnoses on the autism spectrum. Services can be provided at our centers or community-based locations (daycare center or child’s home). Service coordinators and Social Service department help families access available support services in the community, such as respite, SSI, Medicaid, and WIC. Medical referrals available. All services are provided at no cost.
Source: nymetroparents.com

More Details Emerging About California Health Care Exchange Program

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Road to Health by Korean Resource Center 민족학교SACRAMENTO (KCBS)— Come January 2014, millions of uninsured Californians will be able to buy affordable health care coverage under the state’s benefit exchange. The five-member Benefit Exchange Board is making key decisions Thursday in Sacramento to lay the groundwork for who qualifies and how they can access those plans.
Source: cbslocal.com

Video: Know the TRUTH about the Government Health Care Bill HR3200 – Key Points

Cutting health care for seniors and selective outrage. The Romney/Ryan plan and Illinois Democrats’ plan are as close as two coats of paint.

Take Senate Bill 1313 which has already been signed by the Democratic Illinois Governor and impacts thousands of retired state employees who have had state subsidized health care. That promised subsidy is gone. Four state employee unions have now gone to court claiming that the law violates the language of the Illinois constitution which prohibits any action that would diminish or impair current state employee pensions.
Source: wordpress.com

CMS Issues Final Rules for EHR Incentive Programs, Stage Two

Nearly all of the Stage 1 core and menu objectives that were proposed are being finalized for Stage 2. The test of “exchange of key clinical information” core objective from Stage 1 is eliminated in favor of a more robust “transitions of care” core objective in Stage 2; and the “Provide patients with an electronic copy of their health information” objective  is also eliminated because it was replaced by the “electronic/online access” core objective. [¶] The final rule adds “outpatient lab reporting” to the menu for hospitals and “recording clinical notes” as a menu objective for both EPs and hospitals. There will be 20 measures for EPs (17 core and 3 of 6 menu) and 19 measures for eligible hospitals and CAHs (16 core and 3 of 6 menu).
Source: garnerhealthcare.com

Paul Ryan (R) and Ron Wyden (D) suggest limits on Medicare spending — The Background

Unfortunately, much of the country didn’t know what an HMO was. Doctors, hospitals and insurers were doing just fine under traditional Medicare’s fee-for-service system, so they resisted the opportunity to be part of an HMO. Fact is, the AMA had been fighting HMOs for decades in their historic battle against “corporate medicine.” Private HMOs like Physicians Health Plan in Minneapolis “went public for-profit,” began acquiring HMOs in other parts of the country, and is now UnitedHealth Group. BCBC non-profits converted and more than half of them nationally are now Wellpoint or other for-profit companies.
Source: stthomas.edu

Shaping The Health Care Debate: Beebe, McDaniel, Darr All On State Insurance Plans

Beebe’s health insurance positions have also been influenced by his 10-year service on the board of directors of a Searcy hospital. The Governor has publicly referenced that experience on numerous occasions to discuss his position that accepting more Medicaid funding from the federal government would help with uninsured hospital patients whose lack of health care coverage sticks Arkansas hospitals with millions of dollars in uncompensated treatment every year.
Source: inveritasinfo.com

Walgreen to launch loyalty

LA RABIDA CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL, Chicago: Patricia Holmes, 51, pictured, to board trustee, and continuing as a partner and diversity committee co-chair at Schiff Hardin LLP. Also, John Harney, 49, to board trustee, and continuing as chief operating officer of Mesirow Insurance Services; and Kweku Obed, 35, to board trustee, and continuing as a principal and senior consultant at Mercer.
Source: chicagobusiness.com

Accurate health care coding, health care transcription, healthcare remarks solutions due to China.

When you compare individual medical insurance plans and main medical plans, you’ll possibly discover that main medical plans are generally higher priced. However you’re not really looking for higher priced! You’re looking for cost-effective medical care! Be confident, you will find cost-effective medical care using a main health insurance program. When you may spend more about payments when you buy a main health insurance program, you will save cash in terms of main medical expenses – feel main surgical treatments, prolonged clinic keeps, and so forth. These kinds of medical care protection tend to be higher priced as compared to, say, an everyday check-up. These kinds of medical care protection are the types that will economically crack a person should you don’t have protection, or sufficient protection, in case these people occur. A regular individual medical insurance program is not going to include the identical higher amount of money of main medical treatment that the main health insurance program covers. This is actually the time individuals higher payments start making feeling.
Source: blogspot.com

At 55 and 53, couple split by Romney Medicare plan

In this photo taken Aug. 21, 2012, Mike O’Malley, 55, left, and Sharon O’Malley, 53, pose for a photo in Chicago. Mitt Romney’s Medicare plan would have very different effects on couples and siblings just a few years apart in age. It’s leading to comparisons _ and sometimes perhaps a touch of envy The GOP presidential candidate wants to revamp Medicare for future retirees _ anyone now 54 and younger. Starting in 2023, they’d get a fixed amount of money from the government to pick private health insurance or a government plan like Medicare. (AP Photo/Sitthixay Ditthavong)
Source: washingtonexaminer.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

Bulgaria’s Roma Pushing for Real Accountability in Health Care

Across Europe, Roma face greater health problems and less access to adequate health care than majority populations. European countries that have signed on to the Decade of Roma Inclusion have developed policies to improve the health of Roma populations, including strategies required by the European Commission for member states. Yet in reality, government progress reports may not include the voice and perspective of those who should benefit from these policies. A recent review of Roma integration strategies in the European Union found very little civil society participation, including of the Roma community, in developing policies and providing feedback on program implementation. Practically, this means that despite strong policy commitments, Roma are often not able to access the health services they need. This is particularly troubling considering that one third of Roma in their “productive years” (ages 35 to 54) experience health problems that limit their daily activities.
Source: soros.org

Health Law Prompts Review Of Some Medigap Plans; Defining Who Gets Dependent Status

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Your plan and Plan C are the most popular Medigap plans, chosen by nearly two-thirds of beneficiaries. Those are also the policies that provide significant “first dollar” coverage: they pay the deductibles for both the hospital and outpatient portions of the traditional Medicare program (Parts A and B) as well as the 20 percent coinsurance required for doctor visits, and cover other services as well. People with these supplemental plans may pay virtually nothing for medical services beyond their premiums.
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Video: Medicare Open Enrollment 2011 … Compare Medigap Insurance Rates

Medicare Supplement Insurance Price Games

By the time most people turn 65 years old, they’ve seen most of the tricks out there on the market. It’s surprising and interesting that some Medicare supplement carriers would still try standard ploys with medicare supplements given the intended audience but, alas, they do. Let’s take a look at some of the pricing games to make sure we’re comparing apples and apples when looking at Medicare supplement quotes. For most people new to Medicare and medicare supplemental insurance, turning 65 or leaving a group plan over age 65 is the trigger for benefits. This is true for the vast majority of new Medicare enrollees. Consequently, if you find yourself coming up on a age 65 birthday, your mail box is probably inundated with all kinds of Medicare information including the various supplement or medigap offers. They’ll most likely show a senior couple on the cover clutching tennis rackets and quote some rates in big letters to you for a few medicare supplements such as the F plan (most popular). You may be surprised to find a wide range of pricing even for the same standardized F plan. Keep in mind that the F plan is the same from carrier to carrier as the benefits are standardized by the government. The pricing should be within 5-10 dollars of each other at most but that’s not necessarily the case. How could this be since they’re all dealing with essentially the same underlying risk? You can partially point back to AARP’s original pricing over the past decade. Essentially, AARP would offer a sliding scale discount for new enrollees age 65. The first year might be 30% lower than the eventual price and this percentage would decrease over a period of time. Medicare is confusing enough to someone brand new to it so a new enrollee doesn’t necessarily know how this discounted rate works. He or she just sees a rate that is 30% lower than the competitors for essentially the same level of coverage. There are two ways to look at this. One hand, you can say that AARP is providing a discount to new enrollees which they can take advantage of. Or, depending on how their rates match up with competitors 5 years years later (when the discount disappears), it smacks of a bait and switch. We’re not here to cast judgement but want people who are comparing medicare supplement insurance rates to not only look at the rate now (presumably at age 65) but over the other age bands. If the rates accellerate as you get older relative to the competition, it’s probably not a good deal. Keep in mind that you have a open enrollment window at age 65 (or when leaving group coverage in addition to a few others) so once you’ve made a decision, it might be difficult to switch medigap plans later on if health changes. If your discounted medigap plan starts to go up at a faster clip than the other plans in later years, you may be stuck depending on your health. That’s the real issue with the discounted rate. That discounted money has to come from somewhere and it’s usually recouped on the back end since the underlying risk is the same. We’re also seeing the opposite these days. Carriers which charge a flat amount across all age bands. Obviously, this is much higher for younger people (say at age 65) but less expensive when you’re much older. To some extent, the carrier is betting that the average life span will be less and they will not be underfunding towards the older age bands. We’re not sure how this is going to turn out. Ultimately, if the carriers run into higher expenses, you can expect premiums to increase much like has occurred with the supposedly fixed rates of long term care. Ultimately, look at all the age bands when comparing medicare supplement insurance plans. There’s somewhat of a goldie lox approach here in that you typically want the strongest carrier that’s priced about in the middle (maybe low of middle). Not too high. Not too low. This provides the most stability over the long term.Dennis Jarvis is a licensed insurance agent concentrating on medicare supplement insurance.

Social Security Disability Benefits: Social Security Disability Insurance

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

INFOGRAPHIC - Why Social Security Needs To Be Rescued by Third WayBenefits are terminated when a beneficiary works for more than nine months at a job paying in excess of a specified amount, because that work constitutes “substantial gainful activity.” Benefits also will be terminated if the beneficiary is deemed by the medical criteria to be no longer disabled or refuses vocational rehabilitation if it is offered. After receiving DI for two years, beneficiaries become eligible for hospitalization and outpatient physician coverage under Medicare. SSI as well as DI recipients must participate in vocational rehabilitation if offered, or be dropped from the program.
Source: socialsecurityexpress.com

Video: Entitlement my ass , I paid cash for my social security insurance!

Q&A: Why don’t people that take Unemployment, Social Security and Medicare just admit they are getting welfare?

and fidelity advisor gold fund holdings is what we are about. best gold etf funds will work for you. powershares db gold fund john paulson and wdti. SBI MF Launches SBI Gold Fund Share Market India: Stock Market. SBI Gold Fund offers Systematic Investment Plan (SIP) for the investors. SIP is offered for a minimum of Rs 100 per month. The fund seeks to collect a minimum subscription. reliance gold fund vs gold etf OSK UOB Gold and General Fund. OSK UOB Investment Management Berhad is a unit trust management company incorporated in Malaysia managing unit trust funds domiciled in Malaysia. Today, gold certificates continue to be issued by several German and Swiss banks, as well as by gold pool programs in Australia and the US. It is more like a bonus or a savings plan. Uncompromised Physical Bullion Trust Funds. Gold ATC Trust Fund. Gold, Silver, Platinum ATC Trust Fund. Gold Bullion ATC Trust. BMG Funds. Mutual Fund. Administration. Management. Company. CIF Brochure.pdf Alliance. hdfc gold fund growth fidelity advisor prospectus and blue gold fund marquette. Physical Gold Fund Luxembourg. gold fund uti, fidelity gold funds quote, or gold fund returns.
Source: goldsenze.com

Chronic illness affects work, insurance

This is one of the main reasons why Social Security Disability Insurance is available. SSDI payments can help bridge the financial gap between medical bills and not having a regular income. Health insurance is tied primarily to employment and premiums for chronically sick people can be extremely high, especially if they must change plans after the illness has already been diagnosed. New healthcare laws will prevent insurance companies from discriminating based on a diagnosis, but costs will still likely be high for people with known long term medical needs.
Source: chicagosocialsecuritydisabilitylawblog.com

Social Security disability insurance puts US on path to financial ruin, says group

Social Security Medicare: Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, right, and Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, left, listen as Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, center, speaks at a news conference on the Social Security and Medicare Trustees Reports, Monday, April 23, 2012, at the Treasury Department in Washington. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)” rel=”dcgallery” class=”grouped_elements”>
Source: dailycaller.com

THE FACTS ABOUT PRESCRIPTION DRUGS: Hip Injuries and Social Security Disability Insurance

Hip injuries can be debilitating injuries that keep you out of work for long periods of time. If you or a loved one has this injury and it is affecting your life so severely that your doctor tells you that you should not return to work, contact an experienced RI Social Security Disability attorney right away. An experienced Social Security attorney in Rhode Island can help you to make important life decisions and can ease the stress of the application process to the Social Security Administration. Nearly 75 percent of all first time applicants for Social Security Disability are denied benefits. This denial is generally not because the disability is not worthy of benefits, but rather because the paperwork was not what the Social Security Administration was looking for.
Source: blogspot.com

Social Security News: Watch Out For Brinksmanship Ahead For Social Security Disability

     Republicans on the House Social Security Subcommittee have issued a press release attacking Vice President Biden’s offhand comment that “I guarantee you, flat guarantee you, there will be no changes in Social Security.” Their proof that something will be changed is the fact that the Disability Insurance Trust Fund is growing short of funds. The trust fund problem could be solved quickly by allowing inter-fund borrowing, something that has been done before, which would be “no change” as a practical matter but this press release is one of the signs that Republicans in Congress wish to use the Disability Insurance Trust Fund problem as an opening to cutting Social Security benefits.
Source: blogspot.com

Barber holding Social Security disability forum

Is this like his campaign and that photo-op with the reconquista slob last week where Barber just speaks in generalities refusing to go into specifics and scares seniors by making them think his opponent is going to take all their benefits away?
Source: tucsonsentinel.com

Retirement Researcher Blog: Kotlikoff on Social Security

People cannot rely on the average outcome for their personal situation: either things work out or they don’t. With Social Security, you won’t feel regret by delaying Social Security and then dying before collecting benefits, because you won’t be around anyway. Regret comes when you live a long life and think about how your situation would have been improved through delay. By waiting from 62 to 70 to start benefits, your benefits will be 75% larger for the rest of your life. That is a valuable safe and real annuity based on an implicit real return of 2.9%. The premiums for that annuity are the 8 years of missed Social Security benefits between 62 and 70, but all in all it can be a pretty good deal and it protects your lifestyle in the event of living a particularly long life.
Source: blogspot.com

Why is Social Security Disability Insurance Enrollment Increasing?

For disabled individuals, Social Security Disability Insurance benefits can be of great help, providing vital financial assistance at a time when they may be unable to work and provide for themselves or their family. Unfortunately, the process of applying, as well as appealing if your initial request was denied, can be stressful and overwhelming. For assistance with your disability claim, contact a Social Security Disability Insurance lawyer in Michigan at Lipton Law. We have the knowledge and skills needed to get you the benefits you’re entitled to. Call (248) 557-1688 to discuss your claim.
Source: liptonlaw.com

Celebrating our Social Security system

It’s also important to keep in mind that beneficiaries with disabilities are part of the larger Social Security system. Changes to the Social Security system will affect people with disabilities as much as anyone else. The Arc strongly supports protecting and expanding the effectiveness of our Social Security system. Please join us in making sure this vital protection is there for people with I/DD and their families! For more information about Social Security, or to apply for benefits, visit http://www.ssa.gov.
Source: austindailyherald.com

Daily Kos: Why I Vote For Democrats: Social Security

A few years ago, we had a debate about privatizing Social Security. And I’d have thought that debate would’ve been put to rest once and for all by the financial crisis we’ve just experienced. I’d have thought, after being reminded how quickly the stock market can tumble, after seeing the wealth people worked a lifetime to earn wiped out in a matter of days, that no one would want to place bets with Social Security on Wall Street; that everyone would understand why we need to be prudent about investing the retirement money of tens of millions of Americans. Yes, we all would have thought that no reasonable, sane American would ever consider privatizing or vouchering these programs.  After decades of proof that the zombie economics of the GOP do.not.work, we all would have thought that no reasonable. sane American would continue to buy into the repeated failure of that approach the GOP insists on clinging to.  Evidently, President Obama and the rest of the reasonable, sane Americans are wrong.  
Source: dailykos.com

Medicare Supplement Insurance Price Games

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

MORE DIRTY TRICKS FROM YOUR SOCIALIST/MARXIST   PRESIDENT AND HIS NASTY LITTLE ADMINISTRATION HACKS by SS&SSBy the time most people turn 65 years old, they’ve seen most of the tricks out there on the market. It’s surprising and interesting that some Medicare supplement carriers would still try standard ploys with medicare supplements given the intended audience but, alas, they do. Let’s take a look at some of the pricing games to make sure we’re comparing apples and apples when looking at Medicare supplement quotes. For most people new to Medicare and medicare supplemental insurance, turning 65 or leaving a group plan over age 65 is the trigger for benefits. This is true for the vast majority of new Medicare enrollees. Consequently, if you find yourself coming up on a age 65 birthday, your mail box is probably inundated with all kinds of Medicare information including the various supplement or medigap offers. They’ll most likely show a senior couple on the cover clutching tennis rackets and quote some rates in big letters to you for a few medicare supplements such as the F plan (most popular). You may be surprised to find a wide range of pricing even for the same standardized F plan. Keep in mind that the F plan is the same from carrier to carrier as the benefits are standardized by the government. The pricing should be within 5-10 dollars of each other at most but that’s not necessarily the case. How could this be since they’re all dealing with essentially the same underlying risk? You can partially point back to AARP’s original pricing over the past decade. Essentially, AARP would offer a sliding scale discount for new enrollees age 65. The first year might be 30% lower than the eventual price and this percentage would decrease over a period of time. Medicare is confusing enough to someone brand new to it so a new enrollee doesn’t necessarily know how this discounted rate works. He or she just sees a rate that is 30% lower than the competitors for essentially the same level of coverage. There are two ways to look at this. One hand, you can say that AARP is providing a discount to new enrollees which they can take advantage of. Or, depending on how their rates match up with competitors 5 years years later (when the discount disappears), it smacks of a bait and switch. We’re not here to cast judgement but want people who are comparing medicare supplement insurance rates to not only look at the rate now (presumably at age 65) but over the other age bands. If the rates accellerate as you get older relative to the competition, it’s probably not a good deal. Keep in mind that you have a open enrollment window at age 65 (or when leaving group coverage in addition to a few others) so once you’ve made a decision, it might be difficult to switch medigap plans later on if health changes. If your discounted medigap plan starts to go up at a faster clip than the other plans in later years, you may be stuck depending on your health. That’s the real issue with the discounted rate. That discounted money has to come from somewhere and it’s usually recouped on the back end since the underlying risk is the same. We’re also seeing the opposite these days. Carriers which charge a flat amount across all age bands. Obviously, this is much higher for younger people (say at age 65) but less expensive when you’re much older. To some extent, the carrier is betting that the average life span will be less and they will not be underfunding towards the older age bands. We’re not sure how this is going to turn out. Ultimately, if the carriers run into higher expenses, you can expect premiums to increase much like has occurred with the supposedly fixed rates of long term care. Ultimately, look at all the age bands when comparing medicare supplement insurance plans. There’s somewhat of a goldie lox approach here in that you typically want the strongest carrier that’s priced about in the middle (maybe low of middle). Not too high. Not too low. This provides the most stability over the long term.Dennis Jarvis is a licensed insurance agent concentrating on medicare supplement insurance.