American Financial (AFG) Closes Sale Of Medicare Supplement And Critical Illness Businesses

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

AFG’s balance supplemental insurance operations consist solely of its run-off long-term care business, which has a book value of approximately $170 million, and which will continue to be based in Austin, Texas. AFG’s Austin-based life and annuity operations will transition to its home office in Cincinnati, Ohio before the end of the year.
Source: istockanalyst.com

Video: Florida Insurance Call 1-866-495-4111

Medicare Supplement Plans That Save You Big

There are three great options through cigna medicare plans phoenix az. Medicare supplement plans work with the existing Medicare plan to provide increased coverage and lessen expenses. Medicare Advantage has co-pays and helps to decrease out of pocket expenses. There is also a stand alone prescription plan that works with Medicare to provide for prescription coverage, which Medicare does not provide.
Source: jacemilstead.com

Senior Marketing Specialists : SMS: Medicare Sales Trend Upwards

. We predicted the Medicare Supplement market would grow in 2012 to 10.4 million lives, generating $22.8 billion of premiums. Based on strong trends through August, however, CSG Actuarial predictive models are now showing the Medicare Supplement market will grow in 2012 to more than 10.5 million lives, generating over $23 billion of premiums. The number of 2012 Medicare Supplement lives is up more than 3% from 2011 while the premiums are up almost 5% over 2011.
Source: blogspot.com

CIGNA To Withdraw From Medicare Private FFS Market

CIGNA will continue to market Medicare supplement products, Arizona Medicare Advantage health maintenance organization coverage, and Medicare and non-Medicare group plans aimed at employer retiree and pre-retiree benefits programs, the company says.
Source: lifehealthpro.com

Guarantee Issue Medicare Supplements

Applicants must complete the Section F: Conditions of Application. While online applicants will need to complete the Health History in order to successfully navigate through the online system, as long as they are applying for an Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Medicare Supplement policy of equal or lesser benefits, their application will not need underwriting and the Health History information will not be reviewed or considered.
Source: wordpress.com

Cigna To Increase Supplemental Health Insurance Offerings With Acquisition

Fox News/Dow Jones: Cigna To Buy Great American Supplemental Benefits For $295 Million Cigna Corp. (CI) has agreed to acquire American Financial Group Inc.’s (AFG) Medicare supplement and critical-illness businesses for approximately $295 million in cash, as the managed-care company looks to expand its presence in the individual and seniors markets. Cigna said its acquisition of Great American Supplemental Benefits Group, one of the largest manufacturers of supplemental health insurance products in the U.S., is expected to close in the second half of 2012. Great American generated approximately $325 million of revenue last year (5/10).
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Cigna Medicare plans and Blue Cross Medicare plans An Overview

HMO (Health Maintenance Organization) plans are the least expensive option. The effect of lower cost is reflected as restricted access to health care. Plans have a set monthly fee, covering doctors within the plan. If you visit a doctor outside of the plan, you are then responsible for the bill. Within a given plan, you have given the right to choose a Primary Care Physician (PCP) who will look after your care. The HMO CIGNA medicare plans cover regular and preventive care costs, referrals to a network specialist or facility when necessary, treatment for injuries and illness. There is no need of paying any additional fees in HMO plans as it has no fees for doctor visits. The CIGNA Part D plan is called CIGNA Medicare Rx offers coverage for 94% of available drugs, access to over 58,000 network pharmacies, no deductibles for select plans, no copayments for common drugs and diseases like diabetes and drug pressure. The CIGNA plan D in turn offers three types of plans namely, Plan 1, Plan 2 and Plan 3.
Source: smarticledirectory.com

The Hunt is Afoot For Medicare Part D

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

You can complete an easy-to-use online application for Extra Help at www.socialsecurity.gov. Click on Medicare on the top right side of the page. Then click on “Get Extra Help with Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Costs.” To apply by phone or have an application mailed to you, call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) and ask for the Application for Extra Help with Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Costs (SSA-1020). Or go to your nearest Social Security office.
Source: patch.com

Video: Patty and Richard say, “Apply online for Medicare” (20 seconds) – Social Security

You Can Apply For Medicare Online

The nice thing about applying online is that you do not need to wait for an appointment.  You can fill out your application when you are ready from your own home.  As you are filling out your application, you may save it at any time during the application process and finish it when you are ready, so you do not have to worry about possible interruptions.  The web site is very secure, so your information is protected.  Once you complete the application, you will receive a receipt and an application number so that you can log in anytime to check your application status.
Source: mexicoonmymind.com

Guarantee Issue Medicare Supplements

Applicants must complete the Section F: Conditions of Application. While online applicants will need to complete the Health History in order to successfully navigate through the online system, as long as they are applying for an Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Medicare Supplement policy of equal or lesser benefits, their application will not need underwriting and the Health History information will not be reviewed or considered.
Source: wordpress.com

Aetna Launches Medicare Mobile Field Enrollment Tool For iPad

Aetna (NYSE: AET) today announced that it will launch a new Mobile Field Enrollment tool for iPad for its in-field Medicare sales agents and brokers. Licensed Aetna agents and brokers will now have access to a secure, efficient and easy-to-use alternative to paper applications. This tool will allow them to capture Medicare enrollment applications in an online or offline mode on the iPad, providing a straightforward, user-friendly experience for consumers enrolling in an Aetna Medicare plan.
Source: medcitynews.com

Social Security and You: Medicare Part D

While all Medicare beneficiaries can participate in the prescription drug program, some people with limited income and resources also are eligible for “Extra Help” to pay for monthly premiums, annual deductibles and prescription co-payments. Extra Help is worth about $4,000 a year. To figure out whether you are eligible for Extra Help, Social Security needs to know your income and the value of any savings, investments and real estate (other than the home you live in). To qualify, you must be receiving Medicare and your annual income must be limited to $16,755 for an individual or $22,695 for a married couple living together.
Source: mysanantonio.com

Unjustified Repeat Tests Common Among Medicare Patients

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

No doctor shopping here, buddy by Newtown grafittiMedscape: Medicare Patients Often Receive Unjustified Repeat Tests In an accompanying commentary, Jerome P. Kassirer, MD, from Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts, and Arnold Milstein, MD, MPH, from Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, California, write: “After decades of attention to unsustainable growth in health spending and its degradation of worker wages, employer economic vitality, state educational funding, and fiscal integrity, it is discouraging to contemplate the fresh evidence by Welch et al of our failure to curb waste of health care resources”  (Kelly, 11/19).
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Video: Canadian Wait List Insurance

Study: Repeat echocardiograms common among Medicare patients

He and his colleagues looked at the use of six kinds of test – echocardiography (ultrasound of the heart), stress tests, lung function tests, chest CT scan, cystoscopy (examination of the bladder with a scope) and upper endoscopy (examination of the upper GI tract) – among 743,478 older adults with fee-for-service Medicare coverage.
Source: medcitynews.com

Avoidable Medicare Penalties May Cost Doctors up to $20,000

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has developed a plan for how penalties will be levied on physicians. In general, the agency will apply pay reductions one or two years after the reporting year for the initiatives. An interactive American Medical News questionnaire can help doctors determine if they’re headed for steep reductions in Medicare pay in 2014 and 2015 based on their reporting activity in 2013.
Source: dmagazine.com

Medicare “Improvement Standard” No Longer Impedes Home Care

The American Physical Therapy Association expressed satisfaction at the settlement, saying it aligns with the group’s long-held belief that determinations of physical therapy coverage under Medicare should be based on the unique conditions and individual needs of each patient. “We strongly believe that allowing Medicare beneficiaries to receive physical therapy in skilled nursing facilities and home- and community-based settings will result in significant cost savings in the long term, as well as help bolster the triple aim of health care reform to improve care for individuals, improve health for populations and lower spending growth,” the association said in a statement.
Source: hcafnews.com

Do doctor shortages affect a state’s decision to opt out of Obamacare?

One reason for not expanding Medicaid may be that states do not have enough infrastructure to support more beneficiaries. Oklahoma is pretty thin on primary care physicians, with 141 active practitioners per 100,0000 of the population, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges (last page). This number is far lower than the national median of 203 active primary care physicians. Most other states that have declared their intent not to expand Medicaid have similar shortages of physicians.
Source: reuters.com

Bloomberg: Consumers Pay the Price of Provider Consolidation

3rd Party Studies ACOs Admin Costs affordability Age Rating Cadillac Tax cbo Cost-Shift Delivery System Reform Employers Essential Benefits Exchanges GRP Health Insurance Tax Health Plan Innovations Health Plan Satisfaction House hearings House legislation KI MA McCarran-Ferguson Medical Prices Medical Tests medicare medigap MedMal MLR Morning Headlines MT Patient Safety premiums Profits Provider Consolidation PWC Quality Rate Review Readmissions Reform RZ Senate hearings Senate legislation Small Business The Link Vilification Waste Fraud and Abuse
Source: ahipcoverage.com

Medicare fees rise for 2013

After putting in some of my hard earned wages and our goverment “at work” borrowing it, Social Security should not be cut. Our president and congress continue getting their same salary for life while some of us are barely keeping our heads above water. These politicians should only be paid when they are in office and limited to the time they are working for us. They miss votes, get paid for public appearances, write books, campaign, travel all over, appear on TV shows and we are paying those costs plus their salary. Even with my 401K, it is a struggle. I was a casualty of the crash. Too young to afford to retire and too old to find another job in a difficult market. I had to go on Social Security as soon as I was eligible. My $950 a month doesn’t cover my expenses but I can’t do without it. Gas, groceries, taxes, have all gone up but my benefit keeps shrinking. Being a woman and being paid less than my male counterparts hurts me more now than it did when I was working. Change was for the worst and I’m certainly not moving forward!
Source: bankrate.com

Medicare agrees to pick up the tab for obesity counseling — Health — Bangor Daily News — BDN Maine

Unfortunately, those best prepared to provide obesity counseling will not be able to bill directly to do so. CMS has limited who is able to bill for those services to primary care physicians and practitioners, including nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists and physician assistants. Those with expertise in the field, such as registered dietitians, are not eligible to bill directly. Medicare will cover services from “auxiliary” providers only if the service is provided in a physician’s office suite and the physician is immediately available to provide assistance and direction.
Source: bangordailynews.com

What Will Doctors Cut If Their Medicare Payments Are Reduced by 27 Percent?

A study by the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) asked what doctors would do if a projected 27 percent reduction is implemented. The responses came from 1,000 groups in which 26,000 physicians practice medicine. Seventy-two percent of physicians surveyed said they would be somewhat likely or very likely to reduce the number of appointments for new Medicare patients. In addition, 58 percent said they would be very likely or somewhat likely to stop accepting new Medicare patients altogether, and 26 percent of respondents said they would be likely or somewhat likely to stop treating any Medicare patients at all, new or established. These are some of the more dramatic cuts that doctors said they would make if the 27 percent reduction is allowed to be implemented.
Source: wolterskluwerlb.com

Doctors billing Medicare patients at higher rates, report finds

“This is an urgent problem,” Dr. Mark McClellan, who directs the Engelberg Center for Health Care Reform at the Brookings Institution in Washington, told the CPI. McClellan, a former director of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or CMS, said the agency must send a message that it “won’t stand by and do nothing … that they are paying attention to this.”
Source: nbcnews.com

Highmark change in Medicare eye exam coverage irks some

• Batch to start vs. Browns; Steelers sign Burress, Hoyer • Bieber show a special treat for South Greensburg girl • Four QBs will battle to replace Sunseri at Pitt • Pittsburgh region not thankful for higher gas prices  • Pets often come along for the ride on vacations, holidays
Source: triblive.com

Who are the doctors most trusted by doctors? Big data can tell you — Data

The new tool, which reflects 25 million doctor referral connections, enables patients to see how many doctors are linked to a particular doctor, as well as their locations. As patients search for new physicians and specialists, being able to see who their current doctors are linked with could help them decide who to visit.  It also gives doctors an opportunity to build online networks that reflect their offline networks, Gutman said. In a post about his “DocGraph” project, Trotter said that his data wasn’t strictly a “referral” data set because, in some cases, doctors might be linked through a patient they both happened to see at the same time, not through an active referral. But Gutman emphasized that HealthTap’s DOConnect considered more than Medicare referrals in mapping connections between doctors.
Source: gigaom.com

The Opinion Blog: Face the Facts

FACT: Physicians treating Medicare patients face a 27 percent cut in fees in 2013 unless Congress again overrides the law. Twelve percent of the Medicare budget, or $67.6 billion, goes to doctors. Congress passed a law in 1997 mandating reductions in doctors’ fees to put a brake on Medicare costs, but has routinely overridden it ever since in a legislative maneuver known as the “doc fix.” If the “doc fix” is not repeated, the reduced payments to Medicare doctors are expected to save $11 billion in fiscal 2013. If the override votes continue, it is expected to add $316 billion to the federal deficit over 10 years.
Source: typepad.com

ParaPundit: Obamacare vs Medicaid vs Medicare

Did you read the original CBO report? I did (http://www.cbo.gov/publication/43471). Yes, it is true, according to the CBO’s (admittedly shaky) projections, Obamacare will reduce the deficit by about $109 billion. How is this miracle achieved? By a $1 trillion increase in taxes! Wow! What a deal! Increase taxes by $1 trillion, and we knock $100 billion off the deficit. By the way, the current projected federal deficit is about $901 billion. Of course, the CBO doesn’t deal with the effects of this massive tax increase on the economy (hint: think of a flushing toilet). According to the CBO, what else does Obamacare do?
Source: parapundit.com

Rural Health Care and a Lame Duck Congress

Reductions contained in the health care reform law could result in the closure of many rural hospitals. The map above shows Critical Access Hospitals — hospitals with 25 or fewer beds that are 35 miles or more from another hospital (or were designated as critical by their governors). All CAHs are in areas that were rural when the hospital was first designated. Provisions in the health care reform law would end a special Medicare payment for services performed in these hospitals.
Source: dailyyonder.com

Medicare Open Enrollment: find comfort in convenience

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Undecided?  Still?? by Patrick FellerLike most people, I take comfort in the things I’m familiar with. I choose to shop at the supermarket around the corner because I know exactly where to find the things I’m looking for. Sure, I might be able to save a little more money by shopping at a different store on the other side of town, but I choose to stick with what I’m most comfortable. We all like to get a good deal, but convenience is a big part of the value.
Source: medicare.gov

Video: Medicare Choices 2011

Medicare Open Enrollment: The Tools Are There to Help Your Loved Ones Make Good Plan Choices

A recent study found that seniors (often with the help of their support systems like you and me) are learning from their experience with Part D over time and switching plans when they can save money, or when a different plan better fits their individual health needs. The study, which we have highlighted in our Rx Minute newsletter this month, shows that seniors are adapting to get the best drug coverage for their money. Research PhRMA sponsored found that even in 2006, Part D’s first year, seniors disproportionately chose plans with lower premiums and deductibles and broader choice of medicines. In sum, choice works, benefiting seniors.
Source: phrma.org

A Season For Medicare Choices

• Get help if you need it. The Medicare.gov website lists all the plans in your area. You can call 1-800-MEDICARE for general information and to enroll in a plan. You can also get a referral for your local State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP). Every state has one, and they provide free counseling and advice to everyone with Medicare.
Source: smmirror.com

Need Help with Medicare Choices? SHIP Advice to the Rescue

The programs are called SHIP programs (State Health Insurance Programs.)

Medicare Annual Enrollment Period

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

As an agent, this is a great opportunity to make substantial commissions and add new clients to your book of business. The AEP for 2013 starts on October 15 and runs through December 7. You may also pre-sale members starting on October 1 and then pick up the applications starting October 15. As you may know, ten thousand people a day are turning 65 in our country. The baby boomers are coming into retirement age and there is a lot of potential for agents to help these seniors with their healthcare needs while earning very good income, as well.
Source: mysumrall.com

Video: Big Country

Thank You Texas, plus Sandy Assistance Round

Independence If you can find someone who perfectly fits your preferences in every category, you’re lucky! Even the best of traveling partners will usually have to compromise about some things. So all the better if you’re comfortable splitting up occasionally. If one person would like to nap, the other should feel free to try out that yoga class, or vice versa. This is especially important when traveling with more than two people. Nothing frustrates me more than the group mentality that everything needs to be done together. Visibility Jeanne and I can be, er, exuberant at times. We like to take lots of pictures; we’re very enthusiastic about good things and politely adamant about problems being fixed. Not everyone’s cup of tea when traveling. Be thoughtful about whether you prefer keeping a low profile or like to run around excitedly. Also consider how problems should be handled when they arise. It gets on my nerves when a fellow traveler is rude to staff who weren’t responsible for a flight being cancelled or a room not being ready.   Thinking these questions through may actually open up your traveling options. Preferences that might not work well, say for two weeks in Asia, might be a perfect complement for a quick weekend.
Source: heelsfirsttravel.com

Universal American Financial Corp. Insurance Company

The company is committed to collaborate with communities, such that in 2010, Universal American Financial launched its ”Collaborating for Good Health” Giving Back Program. Universal American Financial’s healthy collaboration exemplifies a dedication to work together for better health of its members. The company lives up to its promise by nurturing strong relationships with doctors, pharmacists, and other healthcare providers who take part in its joint model of care to maintain good health for its members. If members have closer relationships with their doctors and pharmacists, they can manage their chronic disease better, detect illness earlier and live more contented, more satisfying lives.
Source: usacoverage.com

Week 9 G.O.A.T.s: Talking Texan Badgers And The Other Front

Keeping the fun in mind, I have a very positive Get On/Get Off below. That is what 7-1 will do to a blogger. Get On The Wisconsin Badger Bandwagon The Houston Texans might not have won yesterday if it were not for the fine football program in Madison, Wisconsin. Defensive end, and king of Houston, J.J. Watt had two tackles for a loss, five quarterback hits, and his 10.5 sacks make him the 11th man in NFL history with 10-plus sacks and 10-plus passes defensed with another eight regular season games left. Tight end Owen Daniels had four receptions for 62 yards and his fifth touchdown, tying a career-high. Tight end Garrett Graham had two receptions, including the first touchdown of his NFL career. That is a lot of contributions from three guys from the same college program – a very fine program, I might add, that is doing a fantastic job of developing NFL talent over the past decade. Join Bucky’s 5th Quarter, thank them for our Badgers, and ask about any potential draftees in 2013. As for myself, I will thank them and then taunt about my alma mater’s recent weekend sweep over their hockey program. It is all in good fun, Badger fans. Get Off “The Other Guys” We all wondered where Whitney Mercilus, Connor Barwin, and everyone else not named J.J. Watt has been at times. Yesterday, they all had moments out of his mighty Wisconsin shadow. Shaun Cody had a tipped pass, Jared Crick had a tipped pass, Earl Mitchell had an all-around solid effort, Whitney Mercilus had a sack, a quarterback hit, and a forced fumble, Connor Barwin had a sack, a TFL, and four quarterback hits, Brooks Reed had a few pressures, and Tim Dobbins and Bradie James each had a tackle for a loss. Those other front seven guys showed up and showed up big, as we have been clamoring for. It is that kind of all-around effort from the front seven that is going to limit teams to nine points, lead to more victories, and quiet down critical fans. You really have to tip your hat to the job being done by defensive coordinator Wade Phillips, defensive line coach Bill Kollar, and linebackers coach Reggie Herring. Who are you getting on or getting off, BRBers? Bills vs Texans coverage
Source: battleredblog.com

Open Enrollment 2013: Medicare Part D Benefits Improve but Premiums an…

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

3.27.06 Los Angeles Times 1 by Korean Resource Center 민족학교While Medicare Part D prescription drug plan premiums are generally expected to remain steady in 2013, this PPI Fact Sheet by Leigh Purvis and Lee Rucker finds that premiums for many popular plans will actually be considerably higher than they were in 2012. Many plans are also increasing cost-sharing and their reliance on utilization management tools for covered prescription drugs. Medicare beneficiaries should closely examine their 2013 prescription drug plan choices during open enrollment for Part D.
Source: aarp.org

Video: Medicare Part D and Prescription Drugs

Top Medicare Part D Plan Costs Spike in 2013

The opinions expressed in WebMD User-generated content areas like communities, reviews, ratings, or blogs are solely those of the User, who may or may not have medical or scientific training. These opinions do not represent the opinions of WebMD. User-generated content areas are not reviewed by a WebMD physician or any member of the WebMD editorial staff for accuracy, balance, objectivity, or any other reason except for compliance with our Terms and Conditions. Some of these opinions may contain information about treatments or uses of drug products that have not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. WebMD does not endorse any specific product, service or treatment.
Source: webmd.com

Enrollment period for a Medicare Part D plan will continue until Dec. 7

It is especially important this year to check your Prescription Drug Plan as one of the most popular plans that a lot of people have had since 2006 or have gotten since that time is not showing up at all for anybody.  There are also other plans that have gotten extremely costly, and if you are in any of these plans we are not seeing hundreds of dollars difference, but thousands of dollars difference.  So those that don’t check your plans you could be paying a lot more money out of pocket for prescription drug coverage starting January 1, 2013.
Source: sumnernewscow.com

Choosing a Medicare Part D Prescription Plan

People with arthritis are typically prescribed medications to control symptoms and progression of the disease. For arthritis patients who have qualified for Medicare benefits, there are Medicare Part D prescription plans available. Open enrollment for Medicare plans started October 15, 2012 and ends on December 7, 2012. What does this mean for you? It’s time to review your options, even if you already have a Medicare Part D prescription plan. If you have started new drugs or stopped any that you were taking last year, or if your insurer changed their drug formulary list, you may no longer have the best Medicare Part D plan for you.
Source: about.com

Medicare Plan Finder for Health, Prescription Drug and Medigap plans

The page could not be loaded. The Medicare.gov Home page currently does not fully support browsers with "JavaScript" disabled. Please note that if you choose to continue without enabling "JavaScript" certain functionalities on this website may not be available.
Source: medicare.gov

Making Sense Of Medicare Part D Open Enrollment

Each year, plan premiums, deductibles, prescription co-payments and annual out-of-pocket expenses can change. When considering what plan works best for you in terms of cost, it is important to consider all these elements (premiums, deductibles and co-payments) in order to calculate the total cost of the plan. Drugs covered under Medicare Part D may also vary from plan to plan and from region to region. It’s important to re-evaluate your plan if your prescriptions have changed, you’re traveling more frequently or have moved. Selecting the right plan can save you money and put you on a path to better health.
Source: rivernewsnow.com

Finally the Medicare Part B Premium for 2013 is announced!

Since the Social Security Cost of Living Adjustment is 1.7% for 2013, this should be less than anyone’s increase in their monthly Social Security retirement benefit.  If you receive only $700 a month from Social Security (one of the lowest amounts), your Social Security benefit should increase $11.90, leaving you a small increase in monthly income after the Medicare Part B premium has been deducted from your check.   
Source: retirementeducationplus.com

Medicare Part D: A First Look at Part D Plan Offerings in 2013

The analysis, is the first in a series of planned reports examining the private plan choices available to Medicare beneficiaries for 2013. It is authored by researchers at Georgetown University, the Kaiser Family Foundation and NORC at the University of Chicago.
Source: kff.org

Medicare fees rise for 2013

After putting in some of my hard earned wages and our goverment “at work” borrowing it, Social Security should not be cut. Our president and congress continue getting their same salary for life while some of us are barely keeping our heads above water. These politicians should only be paid when they are in office and limited to the time they are working for us. They miss votes, get paid for public appearances, write books, campaign, travel all over, appear on TV shows and we are paying those costs plus their salary. Even with my 401K, it is a struggle. I was a casualty of the crash. Too young to afford to retire and too old to find another job in a difficult market. I had to go on Social Security as soon as I was eligible. My $950 a month doesn’t cover my expenses but I can’t do without it. Gas, groceries, taxes, have all gone up but my benefit keeps shrinking. Being a woman and being paid less than my male counterparts hurts me more now than it did when I was working. Change was for the worst and I’m certainly not moving forward!
Source: bankrate.com

Medicare Open Enrollment: The Tools Are There to Help Your Loved Ones Make Good Plan Choices

A recent study found that seniors (often with the help of their support systems like you and me) are learning from their experience with Part D over time and switching plans when they can save money, or when a different plan better fits their individual health needs. The study, which we have highlighted in our Rx Minute newsletter this month, shows that seniors are adapting to get the best drug coverage for their money. Research PhRMA sponsored found that even in 2006, Part D’s first year, seniors disproportionately chose plans with lower premiums and deductibles and broader choice of medicines. In sum, choice works, benefiting seniors.
Source: phrma.org

Medicare Part D Counseling Offered

“The amount of coverage offered for medications and medical services varies from company to company.  It is to your benefit to subscribe to a plan that covers those medications and services you need.  Since the Area Agency on Aging of Deep East Texas (AAADET) does not offer or sponsor any plan, we are one of the few independent sources of information and counseling available in the region,” said AAADET Program Director, Holly Anderson.  AAADET Benefits Counselors will ask questions about your health and prescriptions.  Based on the information you supply, they can tell you which program would benefit you the most.
Source: countylifeonline.com

Nursing Homes Overbilling Medicare Program

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Christiana Care Kicks off Participation in Home Care Program by Christiana CareAs negotiations continue to find ways to reduce the deficit, President Obama and lawmakers search for ways to minimize the growing costs of entitlement programs.  Fraud, waste, and abuse in Medicare are ways the administration looks to cut cost. As of July, $3.7 billion in fraudulently obtained health care funds were recovered over three years.
Source: dmagazine.com

Video: Medicaid, Nursing Homes and Asset Protection

Nursing Homes Overbilled Medicare by $1.5 Billion, Half of Claims Misreported

A few high-profile bankruptcies by continuing care retirement communities have made waves in the senior housing industry, and there’s more drama to come—for at least four more years, says a New York-based owner-developer of CCRCs who specializes in acquiring distressed assets. During Senior Housing News’ inaugural Senior Housing Summit, held last Thursday in Chicago, Ill.,… Read More »
Source: seniorhousingnews.com

The 10 most common nursing home violations

ProPublica created Nursing Home Inspect to allow users to easily search through the reams of reports, looking for trends or particular problems. Earlier this month, we used the tool to find examples of homes that had been cited for violating residents’ voting rights. We also came up with a tipsheet for how to best search the records.
Source: tucsonsentinel.com

Medicare “Improvement Standard” No Longer Impedes Home Care

The American Physical Therapy Association expressed satisfaction at the settlement, saying it aligns with the group’s long-held belief that determinations of physical therapy coverage under Medicare should be based on the unique conditions and individual needs of each patient. “We strongly believe that allowing Medicare beneficiaries to receive physical therapy in skilled nursing facilities and home- and community-based settings will result in significant cost savings in the long term, as well as help bolster the triple aim of health care reform to improve care for individuals, improve health for populations and lower spending growth,” the association said in a statement.
Source: hcafnews.com

Medicare fees rise for 2013

After putting in some of my hard earned wages and our goverment “at work” borrowing it, Social Security should not be cut. Our president and congress continue getting their same salary for life while some of us are barely keeping our heads above water. These politicians should only be paid when they are in office and limited to the time they are working for us. They miss votes, get paid for public appearances, write books, campaign, travel all over, appear on TV shows and we are paying those costs plus their salary. Even with my 401K, it is a struggle. I was a casualty of the crash. Too young to afford to retire and too old to find another job in a difficult market. I had to go on Social Security as soon as I was eligible. My $950 a month doesn’t cover my expenses but I can’t do without it. Gas, groceries, taxes, have all gone up but my benefit keeps shrinking. Being a woman and being paid less than my male counterparts hurts me more now than it did when I was working. Change was for the worst and I’m certainly not moving forward!
Source: bankrate.com

Inappropriate billing by nursing homes wastes more than a billion each year

In producing their report, the federal inspectors focused on a randomly selected sample of 499 claims submitted by 245 nursing facilities around the US. The report did not name the facilities. Some of the report’s recommendations were that the government change the methods used for determining how much therapy is needed, increase and expand reviews of claims from nursing facilities, and strengthen monitoring of facilities that have billed for inappropriate expenses, among other things. Depending on the type of services given to a skilled-nursing patient, Medicare paid between $214 and $623 per patient per day in 2009 (the year sampled by the auditors from the Office of Inspector General). The auditors noted that theirs findings apply to the way Medicare currently handles billing. They explained that Medicare “has made several significant changes” However, they added that “more needs to be done to reduce inappropriate payments.”
Source: emaxhealth.com

Medicare Rate Cuts Affect Nursing Homes

, it would begin cutting reimbursement rates for post-acute care to nursing homes by 11.1% in order to cover a $4 billion budget shortfall from 2010. Then, as part of the “Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012,” Congress cut Medicare payments to nursing facilities by reducing reimbursements for Medicare co-payments that beneficiaries or state Medicaid programs did not make. Unfortunately, these cuts are also coming at the same time that many states are cutting Medicare payments to nursing homes as well. Nursing homes are losing money on several fronts, which is causing significant difficulties.
Source: cambridgecap.com

OIG’s Plan for Nursing Facilities

[…] The OIG has also made state inspections a priority. Specifically, whether state agencies are following up on correction plans created in response to deficiencies identified during state nursing home inspections. There will also be a focus on the efforts of state agencies and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to improve performance. Enforcement decisions, including follow-up actions and the implementation of corrective measures in response to complaints and survey results are a core focus in this area.Source: seniorhomes.com […]
Source: seniorhomes.com

Medicare enrollees choose nursing homes over hospice for end

“Perhaps having Medicare pay concurrently for post-acute SNF care and hospice services for the same condition could allow earlier incorporation of palliative care for these medically complex patients,” the study authors wrote.
Source: mcknights.com

Medicare expands reimbursement for some skilled nursing, home health beneficiaries

Judith Stein, director of the nonprofit Center for Medicare Advocacy that is lead counsel for beneficiaries, said the settlement would cast aside a major barrier to care for thousands with chronic or degenerative conditions from multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injuries to Parkinson’s, cerebral palsy and Lou Gehrig’s disease.
Source: medcitynews.com

Industry Likes Medicare Home Care Expansion, But Cost Is Unknown

For decades Medicare’s guidelines cut off coverage of ”skilled” nursing and home care services if patients weren’t shown to be improving. The care in question might have been physical therapy for stroke victims, home nurse visits for those with Alzheimer’s or post-hospital nursing home care for diabetics. Once their conditions plateaued or started deteriorating, Medicare would stop paying.
Source: aarp.org

WASHINGTON: Medicare premiums going up $5 a month for 2013

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Gang of Six - Cartoon by DonkeyHoteyObama’s health care law reined in Medicare spending by curtailing payments to hospitals, insurers, drug companies and other service providers. Democrats want to focus the next round of cuts on providers, particularly pharmaceutical companies. But Republicans are looking for more significant changes in the program, such as increasing the eligibility age to 67.
Source: idahostatesman.com

Video: Idaho Medicare Supplements

Best Idaho Medicare Plans

The federal government sponsored Medicare program has helped in providing millions of Americans with the security and peace that comes with knowing that you are protected. It is natural to suppose that old age requires more medical attention as it is often accompanied by a host of ailments. It is not fair to have to get stressed for medical expenses at a time of life which you should be enjoying otherwise. The US government started the Medicare scheme with a view to help people organize their retirement planning as far as medical expenses go.
Source: ezinemark.com

Editorial: Idaho must rise above its instincts on Medicaid

Ever since the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to turn the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid mandate into a voluntary matter, states have had to decide whether to take the federal deal to expand health care coverage for poor people. Idaho chose a deliberative path by commissioning two studies by out-of-state consultants at a cost of $195,000.
Source: spokesman.com

Daily Kos: A chastened AARP fights Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid cuts

Alumbrados, Sylv, RF, Ray Radlein, filkertom, slinkerwink, glitterscale, abarefootboy, Gooserock, NYmom, saraswati, mimi, emal, Bob Love, tommurphy, Sherri in TX, Vico, mslat27, akeitz, Matilda, exNYinTX, RubDMC, Zinman, missLotus, boadicea, themank, farmerhunt, antirove, fight2bfree, Eyesbright, duncanidaho, i dont get it, Steveningen, Bluehawk, defluxion10, lcrp, MagentaMN, Brian82, Diana in NoVa, FlyingToaster, zerelda, KayCeSF, Sassy, sebastianguy99, Gowrie Gal, lavaughn, maybeeso in michigan, marina, ichibon, citizenx, MT Spaces, Brooke In Seattle, Ice Blue, Jim R, splashoil, Jim P, begone, barbybuddy, Born in NOLA, martini, Shirl In Idaho, irishwitch, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, myboo, vigilant meerkat, profundo, Russgirl, HoundDog, Gorette, KenBee, Wary, blueoasis, DarkestHour, means are the ends, sea note, Palmetto Progressive, Aaa T Tudeattack, ammasdarling, One Pissed Off Liberal, john07801, Cronesense, Habitat Vic, Loudoun County Dem, gloriana, yoduuuh do or do not, DvCM, Mary Mike, dclawyer06, MI Sooner, millwood, carpunder, uciguy30, GeorgeXVIII, leonard145b, TomP, W T F, JDWolverton, TruthFreedomKindness, wayoutinthestix, OleHippieChick, Sixty Something, Aureas2, Involuntary Exile, elwior, Its any one guess, Lujane, rssrai, RandomNonviolence, Gemina13, Parthenia, Karl Rover, greengemini, divineorder, ewmorr, jennylind, zaka1, jomi, papahaha, sfarkash, Larsstephens, Johnnythebandit, secret38b, biggiefries, Crabby Abbey, Progressive Pen, Egalitare, stevenaxelrod, cany, Wisdumb, allenjo, I love OCD, allisoneisall, freesia, BlueJessamine, ardyess, FarWestGirl, KelleyRN2, PedalingPete, PorridgeGun, IllanoyGal, merrily1000, CherryTheTart, createpeace, corvaire, peregrine kate, whaddaya, cjo30080, Vatexia, jolux, ratcityreprobate, just another vortex, stlsophos, PrometheusUnbound, quill, StonyB, cwsmoke, Williston Barrett, pistolSO, IndieGuy, Jakkalbessie, a2nite, JGibson, This old man, Mr Robert, lunachickie, arizonablue, wasatch, onceasgt, AppleCider, gypsytoo, mtnlvr1946, Icicle68, rigcath, Fairlithe, shinobi9
Source: dailykos.com

Idaho Has Several Parts to its Medicaid Plan

The Basic Benchmark plan gives you all that, plus coverage for dental, vision, basic mental health, therapies, prosthetics / orthotics, durable medical equipment and supplies, and school based services. The Enhanced Benchmark plan gives you all of that coverage, plus private duty nursing, ICF/ID, expanded mental health clinic, psychosocial rehabilitation, and more.
Source: families.com

Viewpoints: Papa John’s Complaint; Renewed Criticism Of Justice Roberts; Calif. Voters Rout Food Police

Myrtle Beach Sun News/McClatchy: No More Health Care Russian Roulette Officials in Washington, D.C., Columbia and elsewhere are scrambling to figure out just how to embrace the Affordable Care Act now that President Barack Obama has been re-elected. … They also need to keep in mind stories such as Shannon Sherman’s. Sherman and her husband Jeff spent the past couple of decades doing what we all are encouraged to do, paying down debt, living within their means and being responsible citizens. … They had been making it without (health insurance) until one day several weeks ago when a brain aneurysm blew them off course, instantly thrusting them into the debt they had so meticulously avoided. The bills, so far, amount to at least $80,000, and that includes a 60 percent discount from one of the hospitals that treated her (Issac J. Bailey, 11/19).
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

The Political Game: ACA Already Helping Idaho Seniors

The health care law also makes it easier for people with Medicare to stay healthy. Prior to 2011, people with Medicare had to pay for many preventive health services. These costs made it difficult for people to get the health care they needed. For example, before the health care law passed, a person with Medicare could pay as much as $160 for a colorectal cancer screening.  Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, many preventive services are now offered free of charge to beneficiaries, with no deductible or co-pay, so that cost is no longer a barrier for seniors who want to stay healthy and treat problems early.
Source: blogspot.com

DisAbility Rights Idaho Blog: Idaho Medicaid Managed Care Proposal

The PMPM method does not by itself provide incentives for effective DD supports services or treatment. The goal of these supports is to increase the capacity of the person for self determination, independence and community integration. The success of such services is not measured by their physical health status or need for more expensive medical treatment. Short of institutional placement, there is no consequence to the MCO for providing inadequate or ineffective services and supports. Placement in a state facility like SWITC would even be a net savings to the MCO and for certain individuals ICF/ID placement could be a savings over a robust and effective community supports plan. To be effective, there must be a strong incentive to provide effective developmental services and supports. This can only be accomplished with a robust and accurate quality assurance system and well designed incentives to meet the expectations of that system. We are not aware of any examples of such a system. Traditional health insurance plans do not have expertise or experience with these services.
Source: blogspot.com

ConnectiCare Announces Innovative New Product which Combines Flexible Contributions for Employers and a Choice of Plans for Employees

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

ConnectiCare is a health plan based in Farmington, Connecticut, and a subsidiary of EmblemHealth. ConnectiCare has a full offering of products for businesses, municipalities, individuals and those who are Medicare-eligible. ConnectiCare is ranked in the top ten percent of health plans in the nation by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). A local company, ConnectiCare maintains all operations and 550 employees in Farmington, CT. Visit our website: www.ConnectiCare.com
Source: patch.com

Video: CBIA Webinar on ConnectiCare’s Medicare Advantage Program for 2013

Workable Solutions Partners with ConnectiCare on Innovative New Product Combining Flexible Employers Contributions and Choice of Plans for Employees

Leading edge technology that Workable Solutions has built into the BeneFIT management systems provides a consumer-friendly, yet sophisticated online shopping experience for consumers and the convenience of consolidated employer statement with a single payment option for all selected benefits. We have designed our online platform from the ground up to support individually-tailored benefits. We are excited to partner with ConnectiCare to bring this innovative concept to the marketplace, says Terry McCorvie, President and CEO of Workable Solutions.
Source: directory-net.com

Aetna, ConnectiCare Push Collaborations With Health Providers In Private Medicare Plans

Treatment of some Medicare patients presents unique challenges, the insurers say. Patients who require more than basic care often have several doctors or other points of contact in the medical care system, which means coordinating treatments can be more difficult. For instance: ConnectiCare said a typical Medicare patient sees more than seven doctors in a year and uses nine different medications, so a key piece of its pilot program will be identifying high-risk patients and providing data to help coordinate their care.
Source: courant.com

Winners Announced “Doctor of the Year Award”

Farmington, CT – Today, ConnectiCare, a Farmington-based health plan, announced that three doctors have received the Doctor of the Year Award (based on 2011 data). Each doctor was chosen based on patient satisfaction results and their ability to provide high-quality primary care services. The doctors selected were chosen from the statewide network of physicians that participate with ConnectiCare.
Source: patch.com

ConnectiCare Enters Medicare Advantage Market

Consumers looking for a Medicare Advantage product will find many options to match their health insurance needs from ConnectiCare. Individuals, who enroll in our Medicare Advantage plans, will receive all the benefits of original Medicare plus benefits such as disease management programs, health and wellness support, limited dental benefits and more.
Source: wordpress.com

Time to Get Your Flu Shot

Stay healthy this winter and fight the flu with VNA Community Healthcare!  Please bring your insurance or Medicare card with you.  The following insurances are accepted: those 65 years or older: Medicare part B, Aetna Medicare, Anthem BCBS Medicare, Connecticare VIP; all ages: Aetna, Anthem BCBS and Connecticare.
Source: patch.com

Connecticare Sets The Stage For Fun In 2010

PRLog (Press Release) – May 25, 2010 – Inspired by timeless adages such as “Laughter is the Best Medicine” and “An Active Mind is a Healthy Mind,” ConnectiCare has created the 2010 “Setting the Stage” program for its VIP Medicare members. The program will provide free admission to events such as trivia game shows, dance classes, museums, movies, comedy shows and more to give members incentive to stay active and healthy. “Our ‘Setting the Stage’ program will provide free admission to a number of fun events around the state for our VIP Medicare members. It’s a great way to help keep our members feeling vital, fit and always smiling,,” says Tony Tedeschi, Director of Medicare Program Management with ConnectiCare. “Additionally, we are hosting four trivia competitions at locations around the state to see who knows the most about the 1950s through the 1980s. The top three contestants will advance to a final challenge in September in Cromwell hosted by Scot Haney of WFSB TV 3 and Better Connecticut, where the top finisher will be crowned the ‘Know it by Heart’ trivia king or queen. It should be lots of fun and an event-filled summer for all of our members.” Details about all of the ConnectiCare VIP Member exclusive events can be found on ConnectiCare’
Source: prlog.org

East Shore District Health Department Flu Vaccination Clinic

If you were not aware of how engaged Branford High School is with the community, you will not be able to avoid it come spring when the annual BHS spring musical usually takes over downtown. Led by Principal Lee Panagoulias, Jr., Branford High School strives to prepare students for post-graduation and prides itself on the the Senior Exhibition Project, or Senior Ex. Those interested can follow the ongoing projects through its online blog. The program has received state-wide attention and is a model for Connecticut’s Capstone Project. The school’s sports teams never disappoint -whether it is cross country, swimming, football, baseball, basketball or softball, you can be sure the community will come together to root for their Hornets.
Source: patch.com

Insurer Teams With Medical Group To Improve Patient Care

The second part of the program involves end-of-life care, a term that invokes stigmas after debate about federal health care reform. In this instance, the term means that patients will meet with their doctors and health insurer to talk about treatment options before it’s a last-minute decision in an intensive-care unit, said Dr. Paul Bluestein, ConnectiCare’s chief medical officer.
Source: courant.com

It Matters Where You Get Your Flu Shot

The flu is more than just a few sniffles and a fever.  The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that more than 200,000 people are hospitalized from flu complications and about 36,000 people die from flu every year.  Older adults, young children, and people with certain health conditions, are at the highest risks for serious flu complications.  The only way to protect yourself and your loved ones is to get vaccinated every year.  “We have an adequate supply of flu and pneumonia vaccines this year and have more than 40 clinics scheduled from Hamden to Old Saybrook,” reports Kathy Hand, RN Supervisor of Health Promotion programs at VNA Community Healthcare of Hamden and Guilford.  The flu virus usually reaches peak levels in January to February, so it is advised that people get vaccinated in the fall to give the vaccine enough time to work when they need it most.  This year VNA Community Healthcare also wants you to know that it matters where you get your flu shot.  “As a non-profit organization, we rely heavily on our flu prevention program,” comments Hand.  She adds, “every dollar we collect from this program is reinvested back into our communities… providing additional free or low cost health screenings like cholesterol and blood pressure checks.”For the most up-to-date VNA Community Healthcare flu schedule call 203.407.7416 or visit ConnecticutHomecare.org/flusched.  Please bring your insurance or Medicare card. VNA CHC accepts:  Medicare Part B, Aetna Medicare, Anthem BCBC Medicare, Connecticare VIP,Aetna, Anthem BCBS, Connecticare.  Those without a participating insurance can pay with cash, check, or Visa/Mastercard. HamdenOctober 18, 9:00 a.m. – noon, Hamden Chamber of Commerce, Miller Memorial Library, 2901 Dixwell Ave.October 26, 1:00 – 2:30 p.m., VNA Community Healthcare, One Hamden Center, 2319 Whitney Ave., 4th FloorNovember 9, 10:00 – 11:30 a.m, VNA Community Healthcare, One Hamden Center, 2319 Whitney Ave., 4th FloorNovember 30, 10:00 – 11:30 a.m., VNA Community Healthcare, One Hamden Center, 2319 Whitney Ave., 4th Floor
Source: patch.com

Emdeon Current: New Payer Transactions

Claims Management Services, Payer ID: 39141 Clarian Health Plans Inc., Payer ID: 95444 Connecticare – Medicare, Payer ID: 78375 CoreSource Little Rock, Payer ID: 75136 DiaTri LLC, Payer ID: 36439 Employee Benefit Systems, Payer ID: 42149 Fallon Community Health Plan, Payer ID: 22254 GHI – Medicare Private Fee for Service, Payer ID: 22937 GHI – New York (Group Health Inc.), Payer ID: 13551 GHI HMO, Payer ID: 25531 Geisinger Health Plan, Payer ID: 75273 Group Health Cooperative of South Central Wisconsin, Payer ID: 39167 Group Health Inc., Payer ID: 22937 HIP – Health Insurance Plan of Greater New York, Payer ID: 55247 Harrington Health-Kansas (formerly known as Fiserv Health-Kansas), Payer ID: 62061 Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, Payer ID: 4271 ISLAND HOME INSURANCE COMPANY, Payer ID: IU Medical Group Primary Care, Payer ID: SX172 Integra Group, Payer ID: 31127 LIFE Pittsburgh, Payer ID: 25181 Landmark Healthcare Inc, Payer ID: LNDMK MED PAY, Payer ID: 88058 MEDICA HEALTH CARE PLAN INC., Payer ID: 78857 March Vision Care Inc., Payer ID: Call Meritain Health / Agency Services, Payer ID: 64158 Meritain Health/North American Administrators, Payer ID: 64157 Metropolitan Health Plan, Payer ID: 10850 Montefiore Contract Management Organization, Payer ID: 13174 Network Health, Payer ID: 4332 Network Health Insurance Corp-Medicare, Payer ID: 77076 North American Administrators Inc., Payer ID: 64157 North American Health Plan, Payer ID: 64157 North American Preferred, Payer ID: 64157 Northstar Advantage, Payer ID: 60058 ODS Health Plan, Payer ID: 13350 PacificSource Health Plans, Payer ID: 93029 Paragon Benefits Inc., Payer ID: 58174 Prism-First Health, Payer ID: 37303 Screen Actors Guild, Payer ID: 99289 Touchstone Health PSO, Payer ID: 23856 Trellis Health Partners, Payer ID: 36397 Vytra Healthcare, Payer ID: 22264 Weyco Inc., Payer ID: 38232 Wisconsin Department of Corrections, Payer ID: 74101 Anthem Blue Cross, Payer ID: 47198 Associated Benefits, Payer ID: 50266 Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Mexico, Payer ID: SB790 Blue Cross Blue Shield of Oklahoma, Payer ID: SB840 Illinois Medicaid, Payer ID: SKIL0 Nebraska Medicaid, Payer ID: SKNE0 New Hampshire Medicaid, Payer ID: SKNH0 Eligibility Inquiry and Response Ameritas Group, Payer ID: AMERITAS Ameritas Life Insurance Company, Payer ID: 425 CoreSource – FMH, Payer ID: CORSE00204 CoreSource – FMH, Payer ID: CRSKC CoreSource – Little Rock, Payer ID: CORSE00205 CoreSource Little Rock, Payer ID: CRSAR Coresource – FMH, Payer ID: 204 Coresource Little Rock, Payer ID: 205 First Ameritas of New York, Payer ID: 426 First Ameritas of New York, Payer ID: AMTAS00426 First Reliance Standard Life Ins Co., Payer ID: 428 First Reliance Standard Life Insurance Company, Payer ID: AMTAS428 MMSI, Payer ID: 85 MMSI, Payer ID: MMSI Medica, Payer ID: 404 Medica, Payer ID: MEDIC Medical Mutual of Ohio, Payer ID: 211 Medical Mutual of Ohio, Payer ID: MMO00211 Nippon Life Benefits, Payer ID: NIPON Peoples Health, Payer ID: PPLSH Reliance Standard Life Insurance Company, Payer ID: 427 Reliance Standard Life Insurance Company, Payer ID: AMTAS00427 SAMBA Health Benefit Plan, Payer ID: SAMBA Standard Insurance Company, Payer ID: 429 Standard Insurance Company, Payer ID: AMTAS00429 Standard Life Insurance Company of New York, Payer ID: 430 Standard Life Insurance Company of New York, Payer ID: AMTAS00430 ameritas, Payer ID: AMTAS00425 Blue Cross Blue Shield of Pennsylvania (Highmark), Payer ID: BCPAC Blue Cross Blue Shield of Pennsylvania – Highmark, Payer ID: 440 Mountain State, Payer ID: MTNST Affinity Health Plan, Payer ID: AFNTY New Jersey Medicaid, Payer ID: AID19 New Jersy Medicaid, Payer ID: NJ South Dakota Medicaid, Payer ID: AID28 South Dakota Medicaid, Payer ID: SD Claim Status And Response: Ameritas Group, Payer ID: AMERITAS Ameritas Life Insurance Company, Payer ID: 425 CoreSource – FMH, Payer ID: CORSE00204 CoreSource – FMH, Payer ID: CRSKC CoreSource – Little Rock, Payer ID: CORSE00205 CoreSource Little Rock, Payer ID: CRSAR Coresource – FMH, Payer ID: 204 Coresource Little Rock, Payer ID: 205 First Ameritas of New York, Payer ID: 426 First Ameritas of New York, Payer ID: AMTAS00426 First Reliance Standard Life Ins Co., Payer ID: 428 First Reliance Standard Life Insurance Company, Payer ID: AMTAS428 MMSI, Payer ID: 85 MMSI, Payer ID: MMSI Medica, Payer ID: 404 Medica, Payer ID: MEDIC Nippon Life Benefits, Payer ID: NIPON Peoples Health, Payer ID: PPLSH Reliance Standard Life Insurance Company, Payer ID: 427 Reliance Standard Life Insurance Company, Payer ID: AMTAS00427 SAMBA Health Benefit Plan, Payer ID: SAMBA Standard Insurance Company, Payer ID: 429 Standard Insurance Company, Payer ID: AMTAS00429 Standard Life Insurance Company of New York, Payer ID: 430 Standard Life Insurance Company of New York, Payer ID: AMTAS00430 For all payers, visit https://access.emdeon.com/PayerLists/
Source: blogspot.com

Romney University 103: What Mitt Romney’s Medicare changes mean for Virginia

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Gang of Six - Cartoon by DonkeyHoteyIn Virginia more than 559,753 seniors who rely on their Medicare benefits receive one or more preventive services–such as cancer screenings, diabetes testing, and bone density scans–free of charge through their Medicare plan. This is saving Virginia seniors money each year and also providing them with the care needed to protect their health.
Source: progressva.org

Video: Vice President Joe Biden on Medicare – Blacksburg, VA

Obama Would Better Handle Medicare, Swing State Voters Say in Polls

According to “The Caucus,” the challenge for Obama is that Medicare is a stronger motivator for older voters than for younger voters. Medicare was chosen as the top campaign issue by 20% of Florida voters over age 65, compared with just 3% of voters under age 55 (Cooper/Kopicki, “The Caucus,” New York Times, 11/1).
Source: californiahealthline.org

Medicare Open Enrollment Deadline Extended Due to Superstorm Sandy

Warning: include(/home/content/s/h/e/sheriabrams/html/blog/wp-content/themes/default2/searchform.php) [function.include]: failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home/content/s/h/e/sheriabrams/html/blog/wp-content/themes/default2/sidebar.php on line 31 Warning: include() [function.include]: Failed opening ‘/home/content/s/h/e/sheriabrams/html/blog/wp-content/themes/default2/searchform.php’ for inclusion (include_path=’.:/usr/local/php5/lib/php’) in /home/content/s/h/e/sheriabrams/html/blog/wp-content/themes/default2/sidebar.php on line 31
Source: sheriabrams.com

Virginia Senate Candidates Face Tough Issues Beyond Medicare, While Key California House Races Are Shaped By It

Politico (Video): Baldwin Raises $4.6M In Third Quarter, Attacks Thompson For HHS Role Wisconsin Senate candidate Tammy Baldwin took in just under $4.6 million for her campaign during the third quarter of 2012, a campaign source tells POLITICO… Baldwin’s Republican opponent, former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson, hasn’t yet released his most recent fundraising information, though his campaign told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that he has raised between $2 million and $3 million since the primary. Balwin is putting some of her cash toward attacking the Republican on the airwaves for his role in the Bush-era Medicare Part D law. In an ad set for release today, Baldwin says that as secretary of health and human services, Thompson “cut a sweetheart deal with drug companies while working for George Bush, making it illegal for Medicare to negotiate lower prices. Then Tommy made millions at a DC lobbying firm working for drug companies.” That’s of a piece with the messaging Democrats have used to tear down Thompson since he entered the general election as a perceived front-runner over the summer (Burns, 10/15).
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Tim Kaine Wins Virginia Senate Race

Social Security and Medicare figured prominently in the Virginia Senate race. As the Washington Post reported in October, Kaine  attacked Allen for voting in 2006 to support a plan that would have partially privatized Social Security and for broadly praising the House budget blueprints of Rep. Paul Ryan, the Republican vice presidential nominee, who proposed converting Medicare into a defined benefits program. Allen, in turn, was critical of Kaine for supporting the Affordable Care Act, which Republicans claim took funding away from Medicare, a charge disputed by media fact checkers.
Source: aarp.org

Chip Cravaack for Congress

Democrat Plan Means An “Immediate 17-Percent Reduction” In Benefits Or “Immediate 24-Percent Increase” In Taxes: “The long-range financial imbalance could be addressed in several different ways. In theory, the standard 2.90-percent payroll tax and the additional tax 0.9-percent tax on high-income earners could be immediately increased by the amount of the actuarial deficit to 3.69 percent, or expenditures could be reduced by a corresponding amount. Note, however, that these changes would require an immediate 24-percent increase in the tax rate or an immediate 17-percent reduction in expenditures.” (pp. 28-29, “2011 Annual Report of the Board of Trustees of the Federal Hospital Insurance and Federal Supplementary Medical Insurance Trust Funds,” The Boards of Trustees of the Federal Hospital Insurance and Federal Supplementary Medical Insurance Trust Funds, 5/13/2011)
Source: chipcravaack.com

Daily Kos: Medicare plan tanks Romney’s campaign in critical swing states

But that’s a shrinking percentage of those that are tuning in to this election cycle. Somehow, they are not dominating the narrative this time around. Enough to make you wonder if Murderdoch has some kind of problem with Rmoney (or is trying to stall off Obama’s DoJ). I don’t know if it’s just because Rmoney is such an unsympathetic personality, running so badly, or if Obama’s team have really mastered working a mostly hostile media machine, but this time around Conventional Wisdom of the past several cycles is right out the window. Corporate Media is not able to make the Republicans look good, HUGE money is not selling their product, especially the Top-o’th’Ticket. High unemployment and a still uncomfortable economy are not seeming to work against the Incumbent this time and of course, the GOP strategy of obstruction and blame the gridlock on Obama, none of that is working as they envisioned.
Source: dailykos.com

Choosing Your Medicare Part D Plan in Williamsburg, Virginia

Here is a sobering statistic pulled by a posting over at the New Old Age blog on the New York Times: “only 5.2 percent of Medicare Part D beneficiaries manage to choose the most economical plan” (see “Part D, Part 2”). And why would that be? The market shifts greatly from year to year and providers frequently hide the gritty details with broad promises, but it’s those very details that determine your day-to-day life and much of your finances.
Source: zarembalaw.com

Medicare Plans of Virginia: Turning 65 or New to Medicare in Virginia?

With more than 10 years experience in health insurance and the changes that have occurred with Medicare, I would be happy to help you with finding a plan to meet your needs! Contact Rev. Todd Childers at (540) 339-7890 to schedule an appointment. Medicare AARP Medicare Plans Part D Prescription Plans Medicare Supplement United Healthcare Medical Coverage Turning Age 65 Social Security
Source: blogspot.com

EconoSpeak: Virginia Considers the Fiscal Cliff

Today the Washington Post reported that Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell has ordered that state agencies should plan for a 4% reduction in funding expected to occur if America falls off the fiscal cliff.  While many have pointed out from Dean Baker to Paul Krugman and beyond that the fiscal cliff is oversold, an event that is not some disaster on 1/1/13 if not resolved by then, but one that gradually brings its potentially recessionary impact on the US in gradually over weeks and months, it is true that Virginia may well be more negatively impacted by it than any other states due to its greater reliance on DOD spending than any other state in per capita terms, and in order to get House Republicans to buy into a tax increase as part of a compromise (which they refused to go along with, despite this cliff), major cuts in DOD spending were put into it along with ending the Bush tax cuts (and we all know how terribly the US economy performed under the Clinton tax code), so that indeed it is not at all ridiculous of Virginia’s governor to make appropriate plans in case of the worst possible outcome, although the fact that the Commonwealth has been running budget surpluses for the past three years mitigates this danger to the point that only a 4% contingent cut is being planned for. The other matter that the governor is dealing with is that of the reality that Obama’s ACA, that offshoot of a Republican Heritage Foundation proposal, will now remain the law of the land given the election outcome.  However, the implementation of it into practice depends on a major expansion of Medicaid. Indeed, when one gets down to the real gist of how Obamneycare expands insurance coverage, this is the main mechanism, well beyond what is expected to occur from the creation of the various state and federal and state/federal individual mandated exchanges.  However, the SCOTUS has stupidly and carelessly decided that states do not need to expand the program (and Medicaid should always have been a strictly federal program like Medicare, but… ).  In any case, Gov. McDonnell, facing the possibility of fiscal shortfalls arising from the falling off the fiscal cliff, is making clear that one of the first things to go would be any ACA-prescripted expansion of Medicaid coverage.  Indeed, even if the fiscal cliff is elided, he is not necessarily inclined to expand it anyway. This indeed makes it clear that the major program most at risk due to the forthcoming fiscal cliff negotiations is indeed Medicaid. This has been clear for some time, and it is clear that if in fact Romney had won the election, Medicaid would have been on a serious chopping block.  It may still be.  After all, if there is an effort to seriously reduce federal spending being pushed in the upcoming negotiations between Obama and the Congress, there are only five programs that exceed $100 billion per year in the face of a budget deficit still more than ten times that.  Those programs are Defense, Social Security, Medicare, Interest Payments on the National Debt, and Medicaid.  The powerful political forces lined up to defend the top four (and some would argue that interest payments on the debt are beyond cutting, although a default on our debt would change that one) may indeed lead to the outcome of seriously cutting Medicaid, whose main recipients and supporters are poor and powerless.  The farce would be to fake a spending cut by sending Medicaid to the states, possibly entirely as Paul Ryan has suggested at times. But, as we are seeing in Virginia, sending it to the states may amount to ending it, or at least really seriously cutting it, leaving the poor uninsured en masse. The deeper issue is that the whole fiscal cliff is a fabricated farce, drummed up out of the House Republicans’ ridiculous and irresponsible effort to play serious games with raising the 94-year old debt ceiling.  That this ancient and unconstitutional limit has not been a serious issue in the past is precisely because no one was so stupid or irresponsible to mess with raising it when that needed to be done.  Now that the House GOP has decided to play blackmail games with it, it has become clear that this monstrosity that no other country in the world has ever had (some have targets based on percents of GDP, not absolute nominal debt ceilings), must go.  Bill Clinton told Obama back when this issue erupted in 2011 that he should just declare it unconstitutional and proceed paying the bills legally mandated previously by Congress, a move initially suggested by Bruce Bartlett back in the 80s when he was serving as Assistant Treasury Secretary for Ronald Reagan.  That issue is not immediately in play for the negotiations the last blackmail round set up for this totally unnecessary fiscal cliff, but when it comes up sometime later this spring, Obama should do the right thing and declare the debt ceiling unconstitutional, thus saving the republic any further fooling with this ridiculous farce.
Source: blogspot.com

Medicare agrees to pick up the tab for obesity counseling — Health — Bangor Daily News — BDN Maine

Unfortunately, those best prepared to provide obesity counseling will not be able to bill directly to do so. CMS has limited who is able to bill for those services to primary care physicians and practitioners, including nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists and physician assistants. Those with expertise in the field, such as registered dietitians, are not eligible to bill directly. Medicare will cover services from “auxiliary” providers only if the service is provided in a physician’s office suite and the physician is immediately available to provide assistance and direction.
Source: bangordailynews.com