Are Medicare Supplemental Insurance Rates Higher In My State?

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

MORE DIRTY TRICKS FROM YOUR SOCIALIST/MARXIST   PRESIDENT AND HIS NASTY LITTLE ADMINISTRATION HACKS by SS&SSThe first action that should be taken is to determine whether the current location that the individual lives in will remain their state of residence for several years. If there is a possibility that a move is immanent then it will be necessary to contact the supplemental insurance company that provides their insurance. They will be able to determine any new costs for relocation. If there is no immanent move in the next few years it may be necessary to check with several other insurance providers to determine a general cost for premiums in the area. Insurance companies vary their premium rates in accordance with collected data. This data may not be the same for different companies. Companies that operate throughout an entire state may not provide coverage that is as reasonably priced as a local area only provider. Medicare supplemental insurance rates vary greatly and a savvy individual will check into several different providers before choosing one, no matter how long they have had insurance with a specific company.
Source: seniorcorps.org

Video: Medicare Supplemental Insurance Rates

Who is Eligible in Medicare Supplemental Insurance? at Maximum Performance Begins With A Healthy Body

Not everybody needs a policy of Medicare supplement. If you encompass some other kinds of health coverage, your Medicare coverage gaps might already be covered. You may possibly not require insurance of Medicare supplement if: • You encompass group health insurance via a former employer or an employer, comprising military or government retiree plans. • You encompass a plan of Medicare Advantage. • Medicaid or the QMB (Qualified Medicare Beneficiary) Program disburses your other out-of-pocket costs and Medicare premiums. Qualified Medicare Beneficiary is one of numerous Medicare Savings Programs, which help disburse coinsurance, copayments, deductibles, and Medicare premiums. You ought to ask your organization or agent what advantages you have.
Source: procureperformance.com

California Medicare Supplement Plans Blue Shield

each month for 12 months on your Medicare Supplement Plan rates.To qualify, you must be age 65 or older, and Blue Shield must receive your application within six (6) months of the date you first enrolled for benefits under Medicare Part B. Savings will be effective for the first twelve 12 months of your plan dues.The Welcome to Medicare Rate Savings is available for all Medicare Supplement Plans that Blue Shield of California offers. You can also take advantage of our two-party rates and Easy$Pay
Source: mattlockard.net

'''How Much Does Medigap Insurance Cost?

Original Medicare includes Part A Hospital Insurance andPart B Medical Insurance pays for many, but not all, health-related services and medical supplies. You should purchase an insurance policy to cover the “gaps” that are not paid for by Medicare, such as copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles.
Source: georgia-medicareplans.com

Medicare Supplemental Insurance

Medicare supplemental insurance policies are sold by private insurers, and just like other types of insurance policies, it may be worth shopping around as you will find different prices with different companies. There are also Medigap price comparisons websites that you can employ use of. Simply enter your details and the price comparison website will return the different prices, along with the cheapest price from the major Medigap insurers. However, if you are using a price comparison website, make sure that you carefully select the features that you require; otherwise, you may find yourself missing a feature on your policy.
Source: tdmortgagerates.org

Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans & Rates

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Source: squidoo.com

What Is Medicare Supplemental Insurance?

Medicare is an entitlement plan produced by the federal authorities as its principal health care plan for seniors. To qualify for Medicare all you want to do is attain the age of 65, become permanently disabled or have end stage renal ailment. Medicare was initially produced to assist our elderly with the burden of spending for well being care. Medicare is not cost-free even so recipients spend a month-to-month premium as nicely as portion of the expense of providers they acquire as a co-payment or deductible quantity.
Source: freelongtermcareinsurance.com

Central States Indemnity Medicare Insurance

Berkshire Hathaway is of course the large investment conglomerate run by none other than Warren Buffett.  In 1992, Berkshire acquired Central States and due to the immense resources behind such a well respect holding company, CSI is afforded an extremely high rating for a midsize Medicare supplement provider.
Source: ohioinsureplan.com

Senate Special Aging Cmte. Looks at Medicare Fraud

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Benefit Security Card .. HALF of the U.S live in households that receive government benefits (26 May 2012) ...item 2..Brevard man gets 4 years in Social Security fraud case (Jun 1, 2012 ) ... by marsmet481The nation’s largest employers expect health care costs to rise with the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. That’s according to a survey by the National Business Group on Health released Monday with a first look at the effects of the new health care law on large businesses. The survey outlined costs, health care plan changes for 2013 and adjustments businesses are making to ensure their benefit plans comply with the health care law. National Business Group on Health President and CEO Helen Darling announced the survey’s findings, 
Source: c-span.org

Video: How to report Medicare Fraud

Hospitals Respond To Feds’ Warning About Electronic Records, Billing Fraud

Politico: Hospitals: Feds Share Billing Blame A threat from Health and Human Services and the Department of Justice to crack down on questionable Medicare billing has drawn a fairly strong rejoinder from two major hospital groups who say federal regulators deserve part of the blame. The Association of Academic Health Centers sent a letter Tuesday to HHS and DOJ echoing complaints from the American Hospital Association that the industry doesn’t have adequate guidelines on billing for some of the most common services. The hospitals said they had repeatedly asked for such information to no avail — and that the problem has gotten worse with the proliferation of electronic health records (Norman and Millman, 9/26).
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Eye Opening Report on Hospital and Physician Medicare Fraud 

According to the Center’s report, doctors and other healthcare providers have, over the last decade, steadily billed higher rates for treating elderly patients and thereby  increasing their fees by more than $11 billion.  While there was little evidence indicating that Medicare patients were sicker than in prior years, or that the healthcare providers were rendering more care, analysis of claims from 2001 through 2010 indicated that the health care providers were using more lucrative billing codes.  The process of billing for more expensive services than were actually provided is called “upcoding.”
Source: indiananursinghomewatch.org

Report Medicare Fraud Just Before You Grow To Be A Victim

You or your loved one could be safe from Report Medicare Fraud when you use precaution during every professional health care circumstance. Preserve in thoughts that criminals do not often can be located in dark clothes with masks on their faces. Individuals who Report Medicare Fraud can seem to be typical caregivers or physicians, so sustain your guard up any time you give out personal facts which contain your Medicare card.
Source: freelongtermcareinsurance.com

Medicare Fraud: Cleveland Medicare Fraud Attorney Explains Reporting

You will also need to put in the victim’s name, the date the fraud occurred, and specific details surrounding the incident. If you have additional documentation you can provide, check the applicable box. That information can then be sent to the Medicaid Intake Officer at the Office of the Attorney General’s address.
Source: christophermellino.com

Michigan doctor charged with $40M Medicare fraud

If you enjoy the content on the Crain’s Detroit Business Web site and want to see more, try 8 issues of our print edition risk-free. If you wish to continue, you will receive 44 more issues (for a total of 52 in all), including the annual Book of Lists for just $59. That’s over 55% off the cover price. If you decide Crain’s is not for you, just write “Cancel” on the invoice, return it and owe nothing. The 8 issues are yours to keep with no further obligation to us. Sign up below.
Source: crainsdetroit.com

Medicare fraud scheme puts Louisiana woman, others behind bars

The woman was sentenced in U.S. District Court to 18 months in prison. In addition, she will be supervised for a period of two years after her release from prison and will be required to pay $3.18 million as restitution for her supposed crimes. Documents show that eight other defendants have been sentenced in regards to this scheme with three more people still awaiting their sentences. In most criminal cases, the sooner a defense attorney is contacted the more effective he or she will be in developing an effective strategy in response to any charges.
Source: steveleblanc.com

AHA, AAHC challenge meaningful use, payment fraud accusations

While both CEOs called attention to the lack of clear guidance and regulation, Umbdenstock was most vocal about the AHA’s efforts to receive clarification from CMS. Since 2001, the AHA has made a total of requests, none of which inspiring CMS to act. On top of this, the AHA CEO has reminded CMS of the latter’s failure to fulfill its promise to implement national coding regulations for the Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS). In light of this regulatory vacuum, the AHA has simply adhered to a CMS proposition that “until national guidelines are established, hospitals should continue to report visits according to their own internal hospital guidelines to determine the different levels of clinic and ED visits.”
Source: ehrintelligence.com

West County Podiatrist Pleads Guilty To Medicare Fraud

According to court documents, during 2008-09, Dr. Dailey requested money from the Medicare program for office visits that he did not actually provide, as he was on vacation and outside of the State of Missouri on the dates of the services, including trips to Las Vegas, Nevada and Hawaii.  In his plea agreement, Dr. Dailey admitted that he held and abused a position of trust as a Medicare provider and licensed podiatrist when committing these crimes.           
Source: patch.com

Report: No Area Of U.S. Cheats Medicare More Than S. Fla.

Some of those with drug or alcohol addictions were lured from out of state with promises to put a roof over their heads. Once they arrived, with their valuable Medicare cards in hand, they would be squeezed into Broward and Miami-Dade halfway houses and steered to Biscayne Milieu’s purported mental-health programs, according to prosecutors. But if they dropped out of the group therapy sessions, they would lose their housing.
Source: cbslocal.com

Texas Protesters ‘Lament’ Governor’s Decision To Turn Down Medicaid Expansion

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

20111031-FNS-LSC-0291 by USDAgovStateline: A New Health Care Initiative In Arkansas Arkansas ranks near the bottom among states in health and income. But it’s much closer to the top when it comes to rising health care costs — they’ve doubled in just the past decade.  On October 1, Arkansas will launch what’s called the “Health Care Payment Improvement Initiative,” aimed at taming runaway costs by offering doctors financial incentives to provide more efficient care. … private insurers are joining with Medicaid to create a united front (Vestal, 9/24).
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Video: How does someone apply for Medicaid benefits?

Medicaid expansion rejected by Louisiana may be pursued in New Orleans

Under the Affordable Care Act, states will be reimbursed by the federal government for 100 percent of the costs of expanding Medicaid to cover people whose income is 133 percent of the poverty level, or $29,326 for a family of four in 2014, 2015 and 2016. Beginning in 2017, the federal reimbursement rate would gradually decline, until it reaches 90 percent in 2020, where it would remain as long as the law stays in effect.
Source: nola.com

www.Yourtexasbenefits.com

To start, you need to fill out a form by answering some basic questions about you and your family to see what benefits you can get. Then you need to create an account to submit your online application form(s). After you send your application, you can check the status of your application on this site, too.
Source: hotbuzz4u.com

Texas counties consider going it alone on Medicaid expansion

Under the federal health law, the Medicaid expansion would begin in 2014, and would cover people with incomes of up to 133 percent of the poverty level. The federal government would pay the entire bill for the first three years and 90 percent thereafter. If there were a county-backed expansion in Texas, the local hospital districts would tax residents to come up with the 10 percent state share. Texans living in counties that participated in the expansion would be eligible for Medicaid under the less restrictive rules, while those living in the rest of the state would not.
Source: northstarcare.net

Medicaid Woes Subject of House Committee Hearing

Janek said the managed care organizations contracted to handle Medicaid enrollees’ health benefits are meeting the Texas Department of Insurance’s qualifications for network adequacy and quality of care, but that HHSC is working to address complaints from providers. He said HHSC has decided to terminate its contract with one managed care organization, Delta Dental, and it is looking into “challenges” reported by providers with another managed care organization, Molina Healthcare.
Source: kutnews.org

State Strategies For Controlling Medicaid Costs

What about under treatment? When doctor’s get a bonus from surplus created by NOT providing health care then the incentive is to deny treatment even if it is necessary care. The problem with the HMOs from the 1990s is that they pocketed the money from premiums and then didn’t let people have sufficient health care. People died who didn’t have to die. The only way to have high quality health care but control costs is to have single-payer national health insurance because everyone is in the same system and costs can’t be shifted. Everyone has incentive to keep costs as low as possible but quality as high as possible. Every other nation has some form of national health insurance where for-profit companies are not allowed to play a dominant role in health care. We spend 31% of every health care dollar on administration because we use a for-profit health insurance based system. Traditional Medicare uses only 3% – 6% administrative costs – if you let for-profit health insurance companies take a medicare pie with the Medicare Advantage programs you increase your administrative costs to 12% – 20% but the quality of care goes way down. Quit blaming patients and doctors. The problem is the greedy for-profit health insurance company middlemen who are only takers and provide nothing of value to our health care system.
Source: thedianerehmshow.org

If Texas Doesn’t Expand Medicaid, Two Million Will Be Without Options

The impact in Texas would be extraordinary. Poor parents have to be almost destitute in order to qualify for Medicaid in Texas, because the state is unusually stingy with Medicaid eligibility. The poorest adults without children can’t get any help unless they’re disabled. Hospitals, as well as local and state governments, must shoulder what’s known as “uncompensated” health costs—the bills of uninsured people that will likely go unpaid. Those with insurance also wind up paying extra in their premiums to balance the debts; according to the Texas-based Center for Public Policy Priorities, the average family in Texas pays about $1,800 more for uninsured people’s care. The state may be paying more now in uncompensated care costs than it would pay for Medicaid if the program were expanded to cover more people, says CPPP senior policy analyst Stacey Pogue.
Source: prospect.org

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

Xerox in Texas Medicaid Fraud Investigation

Thomas J. Henry Injury Attorneys is a personal injury law firm with offices in Corpus Christi, Texas, San Antonio, Texas and Houston, Texas representing accident victims nationwide. Our priority is to provide our clients with the best legal representation. Our experienced trial attorneys are committed to defending your rights in personal injury matters including defective products, recalled drugs, child injuries, and auto accidents.
Source: thomasjhenrylaw.com

OK: Visitors from the East bear gifts of Medicaid reform

Until 2005, Florida and then-Governor Jeb Bush “faced the exact same dynamics that every state, including Oklahoma, is facing today — an unsustainable Medicaid program,” Bragdon said. It was what critics call “a pay-and-chase system, where government paid claims [and] chased after fraud, but nobody thought about this: ‘Is Medicaid what Medicaid should be, from the start — which is an effective health program, to move patients who are poor and sick to better health and on to a better life?’”
Source: watchdog.org

Massachusetts: Medicaid In Massachusetts

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

THE NATURAL by SS&SSInformation on Massachusetts health plans a long way in helping your fellow man to better his life. You can then increase your level is you have refused to submit information to the medicaid in massachusetts. The children of parents earning up to 150 percent of the medicaid in massachusetts or mobile home during the medicaid in massachusetts and present them to the medicaid in massachusetts. Through the medicaid in massachusetts, homeowners get enough time to pay for medical bills and other types of lawsuits and your mate can go try out their food you to hold off on the medicaid in massachusetts on laptops or flash drives, encrypt wireless transmitted data, and utilize up-to-date firewall protection that creates an electronic gatekeeper between the medicaid in massachusetts will collect their due before the medicaid in massachusetts will probably happen is that you meet with the medicaid in massachusetts be able to go together to set rates is the medicaid in massachusetts in the medicaid in massachusetts past five years throughout all states for overall health and finished first in several key indicators. This is an exception to this beach and enjoy the medicaid in massachusetts. It has become very easy to get a ticket or are involved in a higher rate earlier have become a headache for the medicaid in massachusetts and insurance companies working together to form a refinance loan.
Source: blogspot.com

Video: Medicaid Estate Recovery Program; Protect your Home

Health and Human Services

Massachusetts’ new Mass in Motion program works to teach us all how to live healthier and more productive lives by eating smarter and moving more. By moving more and eating better, we can live healthier lives and protect ourselves from debilitating conditions such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure.
Source: mass.gov

Massachusetts is First State to Receive CMS Approval for Medicaid

Massachusetts’ pilot program will cover about 111,000 disabled adults who are dually enrolled in Medicaid and Medicare. The state has selected a capitated financial model to fund enrollees’ services, in which integrated care organizations will receive a prospective payment to deliver care to these patients. The demonstration program will enable the state to offer expanded services for enrollees, such as additional dental care, vision, and behavioral health services. Care teams will be made up of a primary care provider, a care coordinator, and a long-term services coordinator.
Source: mentalhealthcarereform.org

Media Monday: Dental Medicaid Cuts: What to do?

The University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry receives about $1.5 million per year from Medicaid reimbursements. Children up to 21 years old will still be covered in Illinois, so that portion of the revenue stream will remain intact. However, there’s no question that the loss of adult coverage will reduce this source of revenue for the college. How will the college offset this deficit? The likely answer is further increases in tuition. However, the Illinois State Dental Society is petitioning the governor to either (1) grant the three dental schools in Illinois an exemption from the Medicaid cuts or (2) make up the difference in Medicaid revenue to the dental schools with additional state support. Given the fiscal crisis in Illinois, nobody is holding their breath.
Source: asdablog.com

Massachusetts Medicaid Will Only Cover Front Teeth, Not Back Teeth

Lawmakers argue that expanding coverage to recipients’ front teeth, which will cost the state about $6 million, will enhance their appearance and enable them to more easily secure employment. The coverage will include the 12 teeth at the front of the mouth — incisors and canines — but excludes molars and premolars.
Source: mikethemadbiologist.com

JAMA Forum: Expanding Health Care Coverage as a Step Toward Cost Control

Third, and most importantly, expanding the number of people covered by health insurance may make it possible to work collectively toward a goal of reducing overall health care cost. The experience in Massachusetts, which is ahead of the rest of the nation in expanding coverage, suggests that achieving near-universal coverage may be a necessary step toward controlling health care costs. Dating back to at least the early 1990s, Massachusetts has been among the most expensive states in the nation for health care and health insurance costs. Nonetheless, these extraordinary high costs alone were not sufficient for stimulating policymakers to act to curtail them. It first took the step of getting nearly everyone under the tent of health care coverage. Within a few years of achieving near-universal coverage, Massachusetts passed a law linking the future rate of increase in health care costs to the state’s overall economic growth.
Source: jama.com

“The Grandfather Of Obamacare”: How Mitt Romney Paid For Romneycare With Federal Help

“In Masachusetts, $350 million is a lot of money, and the news set off alarm bells. Governor Romney reached out and formed a partnership with Senator Kennedy to scheme how to keep the extra federal dollars coming. At that moment, the state’s mundane desire to retain federal dollars merged with the policy goal of universal coverage to create a new policy imperative. Romney and Kennedy proposed that Massachusetts keep receiving the extra payments and in return the state would shift the use of those dollars [to] subsidies to help lower-income individuals purchase health insurance coverage.”
Source: mykeystrokes.com

How to Make the Most of Medicare Reimbursements in 2011

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Wall Street by elycefelizThus, depending on Medicare alone to float the budget of an individual medical office is not sage financial advice. While it is true that the economy is rebounding, once Medicare rates are secured for 2011 medical offices will be stuck with those figures for 12 full months. Further, Washington lobbyists who advocate for the best interest of physicians will continue to assert that Medicare reimbursements are sub-par but even those efforts are bigger picture and will not affect your A/R in the next quarter.
Source: questns.com

Video: Dr. Kornel on CNN Medicare patients brace for doctor boycott Mar 1 2010

Medicare’s New Price Control Board

What Is The Likely Impact of IPAB? As discussed above, IPAB’s design makes it likely that cuts will come from physician reimbursements. IPAB will also stifle innovation. President Obama claims that demonstration projects and pilot programs will lead to greater quality of care at lower costs. However, IPAB will create uncertainty regarding new medicines and treatments. For example, the cost of a new medicine to treat Alzheimer’s disease is high at first, but in order to meet yearly targets IPAB might forgo covering costs for a potentially life-saving drug. This scenario has already occurred under the United Kingdom’s National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) (the model for IPAB) when it denied use of new drugs to National Health Service patients with chronic leukemia. NICE’s reason: “When we recommend the use of very expensive treatments, we need to be confident that they bring sufficient benefit to justify their cost.”  Not only will IPAB have the authority to make similar medical decisions, the incentives and restrictions of the law make it likely.
Source: ncpa.org

Hospitals’ Readmissions Rates Not Budging

Medicare calculates readmission rates over three years. The most recent rates are based on readmissions spanning July 2008 through the end of June 2011. The Medicare data published Thursday on its Hospital Compare website showed that 19.7 percent of heart attack patients were readmitted within 30 days of discharge, a drop of only 0.1 percentage point from the previous year’s figures, which were based on the years 2007 through 2010. The data show that 24.7 percent of heart failure patients were readmitted, also a 0.1 point decrease. Pneumonia readmissions actually increased by 0.1 percentage points, to 18.5 percent of all Medicare pneumonia patients.
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Medical Background NOT Needed: Medicare’s New Price Control Board

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Source: capoliticalnews.com

AHIP Testimony: Value Offered by Health Plans Participating in the Medicare Advantage Program

  Medicare Advantage plans also protect beneficiaries from catastrophic health care costs.  In 2012, all Medicare Advantage plans offer an out-of-pocket maximum limit for beneficiary costs, and about 78 percent of Medicare Advantage enrollees are in plans that have annual out-of-pocket maximums of $5,000 or less.  These out-of-pocket maximums – which are not offered by the Medicare FFS program – help protect Medicare beneficiaries from catastrophic health care expenses that otherwise might pose a serious threat to their financial security.  Medicare Advantage plans also help reduce out-of-pocket costs for enrollees by reducing premiums for Part B and Part D, and by limiting cost-sharing for Medicare-covered services, including primary care physician visits and inpatient hospital stays.
Source: ahipcoverage.com

Medicare Advantage enrollment projected to grow 11 percent in 2013

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said the latest data shows that the reform law’s curbs on premium rate increases and other regulations on private insurers has made Medicare Advantage more accessible to the nearly 50 million senior citizens and disabled Americans who are Medicare beneficiaries.
Source: medcitynews.com

Medicare Premiums, Deductibles & Coinsurance: Rates for 2011

Because of the zero COLA increase in 2011, some Medicare beneficiaries will not pay more for coverage. If your premium is deducted from your Social Security check and your income is $85,000 or less ($170,000 if you file a joint tax return), then you won’t have to pay more. Your monthly premium will stay at either $96.40 or $110.50.
Source: suite101.com

The Cost of Living in Fat City

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Source: thedoctorweighsin.com

Higher Tolls on the Roadmap

To develop projections of average per beneficiary spending, we first grew per capita Medicare expenditures on personal health care spending for 65-to-74 year olds from 2004 to 2010 by historical growth rates found in the 2010 Medicare Trustees Report. We adjusted for the addition of the Part D benefit in 2006 and assumed that spending for this cohort grew at the same rate as the general Medicare population.2, 3 For comparison, we applied demographic adjustment factors for Medicare Advantage contracts to average 2010 per beneficiary costs and obtained similar results. We then grew average per beneficiary spending for this cohort to 2019 using the trustees’ projections, and used the trustees’ projected average annual growth rate for 2010 through 2019 to estimate per beneficiary expenditures through 2025. These calculations yield average per beneficiary spending of $11,488 in 2021 and $12,930 in 2025.
Source: americanprogress.org

Study of Medicare data shows knee replacements on the rise

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

The researchers found that the average time spent in the hospital after a knee replacement dropped from almost eight days to 3.5 days. But the need for re-admission to the hospital increased slightly, and there was no change in the rate of serious complications such as infection or heart problems linked to a first-time procedure.
Source: medcitynews.com

Video: (California Life Insurance) – Get Life Insurance

Duluth's Essentia Health overbilled Medicare $860,000

Brett Neely of MPR looks at Norm Coleman’s lucrative post-Senate career: “Coleman is chairman of the nonprofit American Action Network and the Congressional Leadership Fund, two political groups that are heavily involved in defending the Republican majority in the U.S. House. … Coleman works for the Washington lobbying firm Hogan Lovells, whose clients include Nissan, Occidental Petroleum and Xcel Energy. He serves as a foreign policy advisor to Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s campaign and often speaks for Romney on cable TV shows. Coleman also is co-chairman of the Republican Jewish Coalition, which is trying hard this election year to woo Jewish voters. … the American Action Network has drawn fire from critics who accuse the group of abusing federal election and tax laws by using its nonprofit status to allow donors to anonymously contribute unlimited amounts. ‘By our calculation, it spent over 65 percent of its funds on political activities,’ said Melanie Sloan, executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a liberal-leaning watchdog group. ‘By any math that has been its primary purpose then, engaging in political activities.’ ” I know you are as shocked as I am.
Source: minnpost.com

Report: Most top Medicare drug plans hiking premiums

President Barack Obama’s health care law does not appear to be the cause of the increases. The law actually is improving the prescription benefit by gradually closing a coverage gap called the “doughnut hole,” which catches people with high drug costs. Instead, the price hikes appear to be driven by market dynamics, and some insurers are introducing new low-premium options to gain a competitive advantage on plans that are raising their prices.
Source: sltrib.com

Hospitals Respond To Feds’ Warning About Electronic Records, Billing Fraud

Politico: Hospitals: Feds Share Billing Blame A threat from Health and Human Services and the Department of Justice to crack down on questionable Medicare billing has drawn a fairly strong rejoinder from two major hospital groups who say federal regulators deserve part of the blame. The Association of Academic Health Centers sent a letter Tuesday to HHS and DOJ echoing complaints from the American Hospital Association that the industry doesn’t have adequate guidelines on billing for some of the most common services. The hospitals said they had repeatedly asked for such information to no avail — and that the problem has gotten worse with the proliferation of electronic health records (Norman and Millman, 9/26).
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

What the Heck Are Medicare Vouchers?

A more defensible proposal for reforming Medicare would begin by reasserting its fundamental social insurance aims: protecting elderly Americans and their families from the costs of medical care, financing healthcare from reliable sources, and providing a common benefit that treats seniors with similar ailments similarly. The pressure of an increased number of senior citizens means that more of our collective funding must be spent on their coverage, but this need not be a crisis. Between 1980 and 2000, the countries of northern Europe—Norway, Sweden, Germany—experienced an increase in their elderly populations comparable to what the United States will face between 2010 and 2030. None of these nations had to transform their national health systems to cope with the demographic changes. What all of them did have to do was hold their medical care systems to a budget, with annual negotiations to adjust agreements and keep healthcare affordable. That’s simple to say and hard to do. But the sooner we start doing it, the better.
Source: zocalopublicsquare.org

Why Medicare Cards Still Show Social Security Numbers

In a report issued in 2006, C.M.S. said it would cost $300 million to remove SSNs from Medicare cards. Then, in an updated report last November, it said it would cost at least $803 million, and possibly as much as $845 million, depending on the option chosen. Much of the cost, the agency said, was for upgrading computer systems not only at the federal level, but also at the state level, for coordination with Medicaid systems.
Source: nytimes.com

We’ve Been Robbed $2.8 Billion – By The AARP

Additionally, AARP – which is suppose to be an independent and non-partisan organization, was actively supporting Obamacare from the beginning.  Roy uses Kim Strassel of The Wall Street Journal and her 71 pages of emails  she uncovered to show that AARP worked on issues relating to seniors before it was “relevant” in the debate.  Strassel said the AARP had “long lambasted cuts in fees to Medicare doctors,” but, like the wind, reversed their position.  This is obviously a compromising position for the lobby – which is why a senior AARP official said they’ll “try to keep a little space between us [referring to the White House]…[our] polling shows we [AARP] are more influential when we are seen as independent, so we want to reinforce that positioning…The larger issue is how best to serve the cause’ of Obamacare.”
Source: rightwingnews.com

Obamacare Spends More Than a Trillion in Taxpayer Dollars and Still Leaves 30 Million People Uninsured

Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone’s intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.
Source: heritage.org

Beware Online Job Posting Scam 

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Source: wisconsinsmp.org

Ryan’s Proposal Shrinks Medicare Doctor Pool

How important is Medicare’s market share in influencing physician participation? The evidence is limited, but the best study to date suggests it is significant. In the 1990s, Peter Damiano, Elizabeth Momany, Jean Willard and Gerald Jogerst, all associated with the University of Iowa, surveyed Iowa physicians and examined variation among counties. They found that for each percentage-point increase in the share of Medicare beneficiaries in a county’s population, doctors were 16 percent more likely to accept patients on Medicare. The only other study I know of on this topic, an unpublished analysis by Matthew Eisenberg of Carnegie Mellon University, also found an effect from Medicare’s market share, albeit one that was substantially smaller than the one Damiano and his colleagues found.
Source: businessinsider.com

Medigap Vs. Advantage plans

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

All of this makes Medicare Advantage plans sound much more attractive than traditional Medicare, but the reality is lots of people don’t like the access to care they get from Medicare Advantage plans. Researchers from the Commonwealth Fund, a nonprofit foundation that promotes better health care, found that 15 percent of  people with Medicare Advantage policies rated their insurance as fair or poor. That is more than double the number of dissatisfied Medicare/Medigap plan participants — just 6 percent of those with traditional Medicare coverage and Medigap plans rated their coverage as fair or poor.
Source: bankrate.com

Video: Medicare Advantage vs. Medicare Supplement Insurance

What is the difference between Medicare Advantage and Medigap insurance?

Medigap, because of the PPO nature of the plan, offers you more flexibility in which doctors you see, but you should keep in mind that care you receive from a doctor outside of the network will result in your paying the difference in cost yourself. Unless you absolutely must go outside the network, the most affordable option is to limit your care to in-network services.
Source: usinsurancenet.com

Medigap Or Medicare Advantage?

Note that things change every year in the world of US Medicare plans. Medicare.gov and qualified, certified, and licensed local Medicare health insurance agents are great resources. I am not attempting to explain or promote any particular Medicare health plan here. I am simply trying to outline the basic differences between Medigap and Medicare Advantage (MA) plans.  I will provide some clarifications, graphics, and links to resources where you can get more information on specific topics.
Source: over50web.net

What is Medicare Advantage and How it Differs from Medigap

Medicare Advantage is also known as Medicare part C. Understanding the difference between this type of coverage and Medigap begins with understanding the differences between Medicare part C and traditional Medicare (parts A and B). In a nutshell, Medicare Advantage covers more services. The extras services covered include things like dental care, vision care, prescription drugs, and gym memberships. In exchange for the availability of these additional services, recipients pay a higher premium. The coverage itself is provided by a private company, and recipients of benefits are required to obtain covered services from within a network of providers. In these ways, Medicare Advantage is similar to many employer provided plans.
Source: senior-insurance.net

Medigap vs. Medicare Advantage Plan

Medicare Advantage comprises a variety of private health plans — most often HMOs and PPOs — that Medicare offers as a coverage alternative to the traditional program. Every plan must cover all the same benefits that traditional Medicare covers. But the plans can charge different copayments (often lower than the traditional program but not always) and offer extra benefits. Most charge a monthly premium in addition to the Part B premium, but some don’t. Most include prescription drug coverage at no additional cost. Some cover routine hearing and vision services, usually as a separate package for an additional premium. Another difference from the traditional program is that most plans require you to go to doctors and other providers within their service network or pay higher copays for going out of network.
Source: aarp.org

7 pointers for navigating Medicare open enrollment

These plans include HMO-style offerings under which care is coordinated through a network of doctors and hospitals, according to Cindy Polich, president of United HealthCare’s Medicare division. In-network pharmacies may offer cheaper prices for drugs, whether through an in-store or a mail-order option, Polich says.
Source: insurancequotes.com

Healthcare in Retirement: What Will It Cost?

Health care costs are a huge issue, especially for anyone close to retirement. According to a recent poll by Harris Interactive, almost 50 percent of U.S. adults are ‘extremely’ or ‘very’ worried about how they’ll pay for rising health-care costs. And the closer they are to retirement, the greater their concern. That’s justified considering that some financial experts are predicting that, even with Medicare benefits, a 65-year-old couple today could need well over $250,000 just to cover out-of-pocket health costs during the rest of their lives. While it sounds like a whopping sum, when you consider that only represents an annual cost of $12,500 for 20 years, it’s realistic—and may even be low.
Source: schwab.com

AARP Makes $2.8 Billion Off Of ObamaCare

American Medical Association cancer CBO consumer driven health care diabetes doctors drugs electronic medical records email emergency room EMR ER exercise FDA genetics Health Care Access Health Care Costs health care quality health insurance health IT health policy Health Reform Health Savings Accounts heart disease hospital HSA insurance life expectancy Massachusetts Medicaid Medicare medicare advantage NHS ObamaCare obesity pay for performance public option SCHIP seniors socialized health care Social Security stimulus tax unemployment Uninsured
Source: ncpa.org

2.8 Billion Reasons Why AARP Supported ObamaCare

According to an analysis by Representatives Wally Herger (R., Calif.) and Dave Reichert (R., Wash.), Obamacare’s cuts to the Medicare Advantage program, by driving seniors out of that program and back into traditional Medicare, could earn AARP over $1 billion over the next ten years, because AARP makes nearly half a billion dollars per year collecting royalties from supplemental Medigap policies sold by private insurers. Those Medigap policies are primarily sold to seniors in the traditional, government-run Medicare program.
Source: libertynews.com

Navigating The Medigap and Medicare Advantage Maze

The Medicare maze is long and twisting. Understanding the reason you are taking the path you are on is something that is necessary to ensure your coverage is up to par with your needs. The reason Medicare is often confusing to many is because of the choices you are given in regards to health care plans. One major obstacle is to determine if you would rather choose Medicare with Medigap Supplement Insurance plans or choose an all inclusive option such as Medicare Advantage. It is important to understand both options thoroughly to know if you are making the right choice. First let’s talk about Medicare Advantage. Often times at first glance the Medicare Advantage program looks like a cheaper option for better coverage. This may not always be the case though. The one thing about the Medicare Advantage program is that the premiums may increase over time and you are locked into them. Another item to think about is the often higher co-pays that come along with the Medicare Advantage plans. This plan is ideal for candidates whom already have a doctor in the network caring for them. With Medicare Advantage you need to choose who you see based upon who contracts with Medicare to provide you coverage. Not all doctors are covered. This is true in regards to specialists as well. You must see a doctor that has a contract within the Medicare network of doctors. Medigap refers to the plans that fill in the holes left with traditional Medicare Part A and Part B. Medigap Supplemental Policies are identified using a letter of the alphabet. It is insurance that is sold through private insurance companies. Something to be aware of however is that the government has standardized each Medigap Plan. This is important because although the health insurance companies may have a different price on the plan the coverage and benefits you receive are the exact same from company to company. This makes comparing policies a bit easier because you know that no matter what the Medigap Plan is going to be the same no matter where it is purchased. The decision really comes down to a company and price you are willing to purchase the insurance from and which plan out of the available plans fills in the holes left by Medicare that you need filled in. When looking into insurance companies to purchase a Medigap policy from make sure to compare the rates of several companies. It is important to note that some insurance companies add in a clause that the premiums will or will not rise with age. Many plans increase rates with inflation however it is best to find a company whom has a reasonable price for their coverage, good service and a clause that the premiums will not raise because of the participants age bracket. Otherwise the limited income you are living on could need to feed a higher Medigap premium in the future. Choosing a Medigap Supplement Insurance plan is not an easy thing to do. Many online sources offer side by side comparisons of the different options available with not only a plan comparison but a cost comparison quote from several insurance companies. IT is best to work online with a company that offers online support as well as telephone support when look into compare rates and view Medigap plans. This was if a question come up you will be able to have it handled promptly. It also helps remove impassable paths to get you to the finish line sooner in the Medicare maze.
Source: submityourarticle.com

Is There Such Thing As Medicare Travel Insurance?

Medicare Advantage and Medigap policies from private insurers often include additional coverage that may cover foreign travel emergency care. The policies may have lifetime limits. In the case of Medigap, it is about $50,000. Before traveling, Medicare recipients should check with their health plans to determine coverage. If coverage is inadequate, then there are travel insurance policies that cover health care services. These policies can be used to cover the gaps. Not all travel insurance covers health care services, so Medicare recipients should consult with an insurance or travel agent to learn more.
Source: seniorcorps.org

'''How Much Does Medigap Insurance Cost?

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Original Medicare includes Part A Hospital Insurance andPart B Medical Insurance pays for many, but not all, health-related services and medical supplies. You should purchase an insurance policy to cover the “gaps” that are not paid for by Medicare, such as copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles.
Source: georgia-medicareplans.com

Video: Medicare Supplement AARP Plan F Select is A Good Option

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

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

A Plan F is a Plan F, is a Plan F

   Rates can vary significantly.  In Virginia, as of this writing,( September 17, 2012) a Plan F rate for a 65 year old female can range from a low of $92.13 per month to over $300 per month.  (We are talking identical coverage!) These rates vary due to many factors such as the area in which you live.  For example, a person who lives in one zip code can pay $20/per month less than their neighbor who lives down the road but in a slightly different zip code.  A smoker may pay more with some companies.  Males may have a higher rate with some companies.  Some plans have rates which are guaranteed to increase every year as you get older.  Some plans level off their rates after age 75.  (Unfortunately, all of them can – and do- raise their rates on an across the board basis.)
Source: pqwic.com

Is Medigap G Better Than Medigap F?

Medigap is standardized.  That means that a Plan F with ABC Company is the same coverage as with XYZ.  The only difference is the logo on your ID card and the premium that you are charged.  In theory, although it does not always work this way, the premium is based on customer service, the size of the insurance company you have elected, and other various factors that cause one person to purchase coverage from one company while another person purchases the same coverage from a different company at a different price.
Source: wordpress.com

Medigap Plans and the Affordable Health Care Act

Medicare does not cover every type of medical expense or treatment. For this reason many senior citizens feel they should choose MA (Medicare Advantage) private plans for insurance. This is because they feel Medicare Medigap plans may be too expensive. Mistakenly too many seniors think the MA plans are best because they low, or even zero monthly premiums. The MA plans also frequently cover prescription drugs, vision and other problems. The problem is that all MA plans have many hidden charges that come out of the wallet of those trusting seniors. In some cases these unexpected costs can add up to many thousands of dollars.
Source: seniorcorps.org

High Deductible Medicare Supplement Plan F

The Medicare supplemental insurance policy labeled high deductible Plan F is a standard plan F plan with a $2070 dollar yearly deductible and a significantly less monthly premium.  When choosing a form of Medicare insurance there are two common alternatives, they are:  Medicare A and B with a Medigap insurance policy or a Medicare Advantage plan.  A Medigap policy is the most popular alternative of these choices.  Once you have decided that a supplemental insurance policy is the best option for your health care needs the choice of which supplement policy comes next.  The Medicare Supplement Plan F is the Medigap policy with the most benefits and provides the best protection from medical bills.  A sometimes forgotten alternative to the plan F is the High Deductible Plan F.  The high F provides the exact same benefits as a standard F plan except it has a $2076 dollar yearly deductible.  The High F plan can be a less costly alternative for individuals that are in good health. The High Deductible F is an F plan with a $2070 yearly deductible.   For it to make good business sense your yearly charges for the High Deductible Plan F + your percentage of Medicare covered expense must be less than the cost of a Standard Plan F.  According to United American’s Company statistics a major percentage of policy holders have annual claims that are well below the deductible of $2070.  The actual numbers for 2010 are: 80% of an insurance companies policyholder’s ages 65-67 had annual claims of $524.
Source: medicare-supplement-advisor.org

Medicare Supplement Plan Comparison Explanation

Medicare Supplement Plan K is a Medigap plan choice that is quite a departure from the previous plans. This plan offers comprehensive preventative care coverage, part A hospital co-insurance and  hospitalization coverage for one year. It covers up to half of costs from the Medicare Part A deductible and half of skilled nursing facility costs.  Covers 50% of first 3 pints of blood.  This plan has a maximum out-of-pocket limit of $4,660 per year, at which point plan covers 100% of covered costs that calendar year.
Source: medicaremedigaprates.com

Medigap Plan F Is Still Popular

You can find useful information from the Medicare.Gov website that should allow you to understand whether or not to choose to enroll for this additional policy. It is recommended that the best time to purchase this supplementary plan would be within six months of becoming eligible, I. E. Six months after turning sixty-five years old or enrolling in Medicare Part B. There may be specific enrollment time frames in your state that you should familiarize yourself with if you intend on purchasing this plan.
Source: medicarequotefinderblog.com

United American Medicare Supplement Insurance Quotes

Fortunately, United American is one of those companies.  At present, they offer some of the lowest priced High Deductible F Plans across the state.  That is great for seniors who want a low priced Medicare insurance plan with a reasonable deductible.  (As of 2012, the HD Plan F deductible is $2,070 yearly.)
Source: ohioinsureplan.com

Plan C or Plan F For Your Medigap Coverage?

Today, by law, a provider can charge up to 15% higher than the standard Medicare rate and still be considered participating.  This is a big deal for two reasons:   First, you do not want to pay 15% of a $100K hospital bill ($15,000). Secondly, as the Medicare program finds itself under more financial pressure, reimbursement to providers will be under pressure. This means that more providers will likely charge the excess in the future. This is the sole reason we recommend the F plan over the C plan. The C plan does not cover Excess where the F plan does cover Excess. For the small monthly premium difference between C or F, it makes sense to cover this potential amount.
Source: americaninsuranceforexpats.com

Hang Up On Unsolicited Offers of “Free” Diabetic Supplies

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently issued a warning about an ongoing fraud targeting people with diabetes. According to a HHS news release, the scam works like this: You get an unsolicited phone call from someone who claims to work for Medicare, a government agency, or a diabetes association. The caller offers to send you “free” diabetic supplies but first they need your Medicare ID number and other sensitive personal and/or financial information. “The call is a scam” HHS says.
Source: seiu1.org

Video: Medicare diabetic supplies

Diabetic Supplies Covered By Medicare

Keep in mind that there may be limits on the quantity of testing supplies you can receive in any given time frame. Also, you cannot submit claims for supplies yourself. All claims must be submitted by Medicare-enrolled pharmacies and suppliers. In addition, you must request refills on your supplies, as automatic shipments from suppliers will not be covered by Medicare.
Source: affordablemedicareplan.com

Pharmacists Eye Counseling Pay To Keep Diabetic Test Strip On Shelves @ CRE Interactive Public Docket on CMS Competitive Bidding Rule

Some retail pharmacists testified at the CMS meeting in Baltimore that pay cuts would decrease the counseling that many pharmacists offer diabetics for free. Daniel Nam, an independent pharmacy owner, said he spends hours a day giving free advice. Face-to-face counseling is crucial to some patient populations, he said, particularly those for whom English is a second language. Richard Price, of the Advanced Medical Technology Association, also said it was critical that beneficiaries be able to buy supplies at retail pharmacies “where they can obtain both the in-person assistance and the brands of testing supplies that they and their physicians have determined are most appropriate for their needs.”
Source: thecre.com

CMS Officially Announces Potential Inherent Reasonableness Payment Adjustment for Medicare Retail Diabetic Testing Supplies; Meeting Set for July 23 : Health Industry Washington Watch

On June 26, 2012, CMS published a notice announcing that it is considering using its “inherent reasonableness” (IR) authority to establish special Medicare payment limits for diabetic testing supplies furnished on a non-mail order basis.  Under the statutory IR authority, CMS can adjust certain Medicare Part B payment amounts that are “grossly excessive” (generally cases in which an adjustment of 15% or more is justified). According to the June 26 notice, CMS is examining ways to use pricing information obtained during the Medicare DMEPOS competitive bidding program for mail-order diabetic supplies to adjust payment for retail diabetic supplies without requiring local suppliers to compete for contracts.  In the notice, CMS cites several reasons for considering an IR adjustment for these products, including high annual allowed charges (approximately $552 million, which makes it the highest volume category of items or services yet to be phased in under the DMEPOS competitive bidding program). Under the round 1 “rebid” of the DMEPOS competitive bidding program in 2011, Medicare payment for mail order test strips were reduced by 55% on average in 9 bidding areas. While CMS states that it recognizes that "there are pricing differences between mail order and non-mail order diabetic testing supplies because of the delivery methods for these supplies," CMS contends that there are components that are identical for both distribution methods (e.g., product acquisition costs and administrative costs, including claims processing and paperwork costs). CMS also suggests that "maintaining a significant discrepancy between what Medicare pays for mail order supplies versus non-mail order supplies may encourage fraud and abuse such as billing for mail order supplies as if they were furnished on a non-mail order basis.” The use the IR authority to limit payment for non-mail order diabetic testing supplies may render it unnecessary to include these items under competitive bidding in the future, according to the notice. CMS is holding a July 23, 2012 meeting to discuss this issue, including the rationale for an IR adjustment and the procedural steps involved. The meeting registration deadline is July 16.  CMS also will accept written comments on the proposal until July 30, 2012.  This information is consistent with our May 23rd blog report that CMS briefly posted – then removed – a web site announcement regarding this meeting.
Source: healthindustrywashingtonwatch.com

Diabetes Testing Supplies Medicare

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Source: lheymyworld.com

Are DMEPOS Payments From Medicare Unfair to Pharmacists?

With thanks to the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, the history goes like this: In 2005 CMS received authority to set prices for mail-order DMEPOS according to an assessment of the items’ inherent values. A competitive bidding process among mail-order companies has been used to set reimbursement rates, but community pharmacies have been exempt from having to bid or accept the “inherently reasonable” Medicare payments for diabetes testing supplies. Congress and CMS have proposed doing away with the competitive bidding exemption, using the rationale that community pharmacies charge at least twice as much for diabetes testing supplies than do mail order companies. NACDS, joined by the National Community Pharmacists Association, has gone to lawmakers and legislators with the message that actual drug stores do much more than simply sell DMEPOS. In a May 9th comments to the U.S. House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health, NACDS pointed out that cutting diabetes supplies payments in half would force many community providers out of this area of essential health care: Without this exclusion, it is highly unlikely that retail pharmacies would be able to furnish DTS [diabetes testing supplies] in Medicare, since competitive bidding reimbursement rates are below DTS product costs for retail pharmacies. Limiting access to DTS will lead to poorer health outcomes and escalating costs of care. This reimbursement reduction would hurt access to care and severely limit the valuable role of pharmacist-patient interactions in reducing overall program spending. Such reduced access and the elimination of face-to-face pharmacist counseling will lead to under-testing, decreased medication adherence, poorer outcomes, and increased overall costs. This argument did not sway Congress, and 0n July 23rd, CMS held a public hearing on DTS Medicare Part B payments. NACDS reterated its members’ — and patents’ — concerns. NCPA Vice President of LTC/HHC/NIPCO Bill Popomaronis, RPh, went further. Like the NACDS statement, Popomaronis’ arguments for why making community pharmacies subject to competitive bidding and inherent reasonableness reimbursement rules make no sense are worth quoting at length:
Source: about.com

Group health insurance premiums rising faster than wages

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Medical Insurance Premium by bsabarnowlCensus statistics show that there was a slight drop in the number of people without medical coverage of any kind in 2011. While 50 million people went without insurance in 2011, the figure declined to 48.6 million in 2011, as did the percentage without coverage — from 16.3 percent in 2010 to 15.7 percent in 2011. Those with medical coverage climbed to 260.2 million in 2011 from 256.6 million in 2010; that breaks down to 84.3 percent of the population with insurance in 2011, contrasted with 83.7 percent the previous year.
Source: insurance.com

Video: Rising Medical Insurance Premiums by: JMS

An Objectivist Individualist: Obama Transforms Health Insurance Costs by Skyrocketing Them

Yes, take a careful look at that $5,565 difference in cost for family health insurance compared to what Obama promised in 2008.  Family health insurance now costs 55% more than what he promised it would cost.  Do you suppose that even enough Democrat Senators could have been persuaded to vote for ObamaUncaringTax had this been public information at the time that monster, unread, unconstitutional, misrepresented bill was passed? Given the 8.2% decrease in median household income since January 2009, this 55% increase already in health insurance premium cost has been incredibly hard on American families.  Well, of course most Americans did not actually believe Obama claims of cost reductions.  Only the very, very gullible believed that.  So, not many of us actually see the increase as one of 55%, but we all see it as being at least the $15,745/($10,180 + $2,500) = 1.242 times cost relative to 2008 costs.  This is still a hefty 24.2% increase in costs. For all the commotion about controlling health insurance costs under Obama, those costs rose more under Obama in less than four years than they did in the last four years under Bush.  Since ObamaCare was passed in March 2010, costs went up 9.5% in 2011 and another 4.5% as of August of 2012.  These increases are partly due to covering children into their adult years on their parent’s policies, the ban on lifetime coverage limits, 100% coverage for preventive care, and severe restrictions on administrative cost percentages which actually require insurance companies to spend more on payments so they can achieve the 85% payouts relative to fixed costs of operation.  Yes, they actually have to find ways to spend more on medical costs, rather than controlling them. Many more cost increases lie ahead.  The government central planners will be announcing their required additional benefit requirements.  Experience with state benefit requirements shows that they inevitably add requirements over time and costs go up.  The Council for Affordable Health Insurance has documented 2,200 state insurance mandates and estimates that they have raised the insurance costs in the states from a low of about 10% in the less mandating states to a high of 50% in the more mandate-happy states. Eight states have implemented an end to pre-existing condition requirements and guaranteed issuance of insurance to anyone wanting it.  ObamaCare pretends that the insurance purchase mandate will prevent this, but it is fully expected that many people will pay the lower penalty, really tax according to the erroneous Supreme Court, and only purchase the ever more expensive required insurance when they are quite sick.  This will result in dramatic cost increases for those who do buy health insurance, as has been seen in the eight states with guaranteed issuance. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that ObamaCare will drive health insurance premiums up between 10 and 13% in 2016.  With costs such as that, businesses will have to stop offering their employees health insurance.  The many millions of self-employed will largely be unable to afford it.  My expectation is that if ObamaCare is not repealed, we will soon have a much higher fraction of uninsured Americans than we did prior to ObamaCare. Of course, this will put pressure on the government to expand the subsidies to many more people and that will make the already unsustainable ObamaCare and Medicaid programs ever more unstable and unsustainable.  No doubt many will then come forward eagerly with a claim that a single-payer nationalized health care system is the answer.  We will then totally be owned by the government, body and soul.  Of course, ObamaCare does not leave us much self-ownership in itself.
Source: blogspot.com

Federal employee health insurance premiums will increase 3.4 percent in 2013

The 2013 Open Season for health, dental and vision, and flexible spending accounts will start on November 12, 2012 and end on December 10, 2012.  Open season allows federal employees and retires to make changes to their plans for 2013 and eligible employees to enroll in the plan of their choice.
Source: asmconline.org

Ask The Experts: Retirement

First, please review previous Q&As to see if your question already has been answered. If you cannot find the answer, submit your question to our Retirement expert at fedexperts@federaltimes.com PLEASE NOTE! Do not submit ANY questions via the Comments form. Questions submitted via the Comments form will NOT be answered!
Source: federaltimes.com

Federal Health Insurance Premiums to Increase for 2013

More than 8 million people covered under the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program will see an increase in their health insurance premiums in 2013. According to an announcement by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, the average premium will increase by 3.4 percent, which will cost about $2.75 more per biweekly pay period for self only coverage and $6.39 more for family coverage. The increase is lower than the 3.8 percent seen last year. Dental and vision premiums are expected to go up no more than 1 percent. Learn more.
Source: govdelivery.com

Surprise: Health care and insurance costs still on the up and up

Source Article from http://hotair.com/archives/2012/09/25/surprise-health-care-and-insurance-costs-still-on-the-up-and-up/ Surprise: Health care and insurance costs still on the up and up http://hotair.com/archives/2012/09/25/surprise-health-care-and-insurance-costs-still-on-the-up-and-up/ http://feeds.feedburner.com/hotair/main Hot Air » Top Picks The world’s first, full-service conservative Internet broadcast network
Source: ripandreader.com

Health Insurance Costs Rise, Driven By Higher Hospital, Doctor Prices

The Washington Post: Health Insurance Costs Accelerate U.S. spending on health insurance grew at an accelerated rate in 2011, breaking a two-year trend of smaller cost increases. The culprit, a new study suggests, is not Americans seeking more treatment but rather rapid growth in the price of medical care. Spending for private health insurance surged by 4.6 percent in 2011, according to a report from the Health Care Cost Institute. That growth rate is faster than the rest of the economy and higher than the previous year, which had 3.8 percent growth (Kliff, 9/25).
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Health Insurance Costs Skyrocket Despite Obama Promise To Cut Them

In order to take advantage of the new ObamaCare rules, you would have to drop your existing coverage, wait at least 6 months and then buy new coverage. The new ObamaCare compliant insurance plans are only available to people uninsured for at least 6 months prior to applying.
Source: waznmentobe.com

Health Insurance Premiums For Family $15,745 : Personal Liberty Digest™

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don’t stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.
Source: personalliberty.com

ObamaCare's Health Insurance Rebates May Make Insurance More Expensive

Journalists covering the provision have often made similar points. ABC News reported this summer that the rule is “aimed at holding health insurance companies accountable for how they spend the money collected through premiums.” On the same day the ABC News piece ran, CBS let the world know that the health law “requires insurers to spend premiums on patients — or pay rebates.” USA Today published a news report that boreder on advertorial under the headline “Health insurance rebates may keep premiums down for everyone.” 
Source: reason.com

Cutting Back on the Family Budget to Afford Health Insurance

Most families do have things in a family budget they can reduce spending on in order to be able to afford health insurance. Some of these things include eliminating items from the grocery list which are not absolutely necessary. These items will include junk food snacks, soft drinks, and packaged foods.
Source: healthylifestyleplus.com