Altius Health Plans Altius Advantra Medicare Review

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Altius Health Plans offers Medicare health insurance programs for residence of Utah and a county in Wyoming.  Altius Advantra and Altius Advantra Preference are Medicare Advantage HMO plans available in Box Elder, Cache, Daggett, Davis, Duchesne, Morgan, Rich, Salt Lake, Summitt, Tooele, Wasatch, and Weber counties in Utah as well as Uintah county in Wyoming.  Altius Advantra is an HMO-POS plan, and Altius Advantra Preference is a plain HMO only available in Davis, Salt Lake, and Tooele counties.  The coverage does include Part D drug coverage as well as health benefits.  Below is a review of the benefits they offer:
Source: medicare-plans.net

Video: Ultra Support Back Brace – Covered by Medicare

Advantra Medicare Advantage Changes

A major benefit of an Advantage plan is having a limit on your annual maximum out-of-pocket costs but the required coinsurance feature makes it a lot more likely that you will need this benefit compared to other Advnatra Medicare Advantage plans.
Source: affordablemedicareplan.com

Do You Have An Advantra Freedom Medicare Plan??

[…] You can blame this on your congressmen, senators, and yes even the president. The funding for medicare and Medicare has been drastically cut causing  some companies to raise rates and lower benefits. Other companies have simply decided to drop out of the market (which produces less competition). I would suggest writing a letter to your congressman or senator.Source: wordpress.com […]
Source: wordpress.com

Advantra Rx NOT Renewing Their Medicare Contract

one of my customer’s sent me a copy of the letter from AdvantraRX dates October 2. Here is what it says (sorry about typos, i type fast): Dear Mr. Smith, AdvantraRx Preimer by Coventry Life and Health Insurance Company, a stand-alone prescription drug plan with a Medicare Contract, will no longer operate as of January 1, 2011 so your Medicare Prescription drug coverage through AdvantraRx Premiuer will end December 31, 2010. If you want Medicare prescription drug coverage starting January 1, you need to join a new Medicare drug plan by December 31, 2010. Take Action by December 31 to avoid losing drug coverage. If you want Medicare Rx drug coverage after December 31, you need to join another Plan or medicare advantage plan that offers drug coverage. You can join a new medicare drug plan anytime between October 1 and January 31, 2011. However your AdvantraRx Premier coverage ends December 31, so you should join a new medicare drug plan by december 31 to make sure you have drug coverage january 1. If you join a new plan AFTER december 31, your new coverage won’t start until the month after you join. What happens if you don’t join another medicare drug plan? if you don’t join another medicare drug plan by January 31, your next chance to join will be from october 15 through december 7, 2011. You may also have a pay a late-enrollment penalty to join later. The the letter gives a list of a bunch of companies and the 1-800 Medicare number and website. It doesn’t state anything anywhere about automatically enrolling them into another plan if they do nothing. In fact, it states the opposite.
Source: insurance-forums.net

Coventry Health Care Adds Cornerstone Health Care (P.A.) to their Advantra Medicare Advantage Provider Network in North Carolina.

Cornerstone Health Care has nearly 300 providers (including primary care and specialty physicians, and mid-level professionals) in more than 70 locations in High Point, Winston-Salem, Greensboro, Summerfield, Thomasville, Archdale, Trinity, Jamestown, Kernersville, Lexington, Asheboro, and Advance.
Source: wordpress.com

Pennsylvania Health Insurance

HealthAmerica’s Commercial and Medicare Advantage Plans Among Tops in Nation for Quality and Service on U.S.News & World Report/NCQA “America’s Best Health Plans 2008-09″ List Harrisburg and Pittsburgh, Pa. – November 10, 2008 — HealthAmerica’s HMO, POS, and Medicare Advantage plans were ranked among the nation’s top 20 best commercial and Medicare health plans according to a joint ranking by U.S.News & World Report and the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). Nationally, HealthAmerica was ranked 12th among 287 commercial plans; HealthAmerica’s Medicare Advantage plan, Advantra, ranked 18th among 216 plans nationally. HealthAmerica and HealthAmerica Advantra have ranked as one of the top 50 best health plans in the U.S. News/NCQA “Americaýs Best Health Plans” list* every year since 2005. “We are honored to be recognized among the best health plans in the nation,” said Kirk E. Rothrock, president and chief executive officer of HealthAmerica. “We are dedicated to providing the best possible quality and service, so we are pleased to see our efforts recognized by NCQA, U.S. News and World Report, and, most importantly, by our members and our customers.” The National Committee for Quality Assurance and U.S.News and World Report collaborated to rank the nationýs best commercial, Medicare, and Medicaid health plans. The ranking appears in the November 17 issue of U.S.News and on its website www.usnews .com/healthplans HealthAmerica”s and Advantra”s rankings are based on their Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set (HEDISý)** 2008 scores and the results of a Consumer Assessment of Healthcare and Provider Systems (CAHPS) survey of members. HEDIS is a set of standardized performance measures covering effectiveness of care, preventive care, treatment, and customer satisfaction. CAHPS is a standardized survey in which members rate the quality of care and service that they receive from doctors, specialists, office staffs, and insurers. In these ratings, HealthAmerica’s commercial health plans were rated higher than the national average in all 15 key measures of medical services and member satisfaction and higher than the Pennsylvania state average in 12 of the 15 key measures***. HealthAmerica’s HMO, POS, and Medicare Advantage plans’ status of “Excellent” from NCQA was also a factor in determining the U.S. News/NCQA “America’s Best Health Plans 2008″ ranking**** The U.S.News/NCQA “Americaýs Best Health Plans 2008″ list is drawn from measures of prevention, treatment, and customer experience. These measures are compiled in NCQA”s Quality Compass 2008*****, which publicly reports comparative results of more than 400 commercial health plans covering 85 million Americans. Health plans throughout the country were evaluated on issues such as access to care, prevention efforts, treatment of diseases such as diabetes and heart disease, and members were surveyed on their satisfaction to calculate an overall quality score. * “America’s Best Health Plans” is a trademark of U.S. News & World Report. **HEDIS is a registered trademark of the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). ***The source for this data is Quality Compass 2008 and is used with the permission of the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). Quality Compass is a registered trademark of NCQA. NCQA is a private, non-profit organization dedicated to improving health care quality. The 12 measures are: Child immunization (combo II), well child visits 3 to 6 years, colorectal cancer screening, prenatal care, first-trimester postpartum care, cervical cancer screening, breast cancer screening, diabetes-lipid profile (screen), controlling hypertension, cholesterol screening for patients with cardiovascular conditions, rating of all health care, rating of health plan. ****National Committee for Quality Assurance accreditation outcomes are: Excellent, Commendable, Accredited, and Denied. Applies to HMO and POS plans. *****Quality Compass is a registered trademark of NCQA. NCQA is a private, non-profit organization dedicated to improving health care quality. About HealthAmerica For over 33 years, HealthAmerica has provided health benefit solutions to employers across Pennsylvania. HealthAmerica offers a broad range of traditional and consumer-directed health insurance products, including managed care, HSAs, self-funded, Medicare, indemnity, nongroup and pharmacy plans. Serving 12,000 businesses and over 660,000 members as of December 31, 2007, in Pennsylvania and Ohio, HealthAmerica offers progressive medical management, innovative wellness programs, and statewide and national provider networks. HealthAmerica is ranked as one of “Americaýs Best Health Plans, 2006″ by U.S. News & World Report; its HMO and POS products have an “Excellent” accreditation by the National Committee for Quality Assurance. HealthAmerica has corporate offices in Pittsburgh and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and employs over 2,200 people in the commonwealth.
Source: blogspot.com

Visting Nurse Association to hold flu shot clinic Jan. 16

The flu shot will be available for people 18 years of age or older and nonpregnant women. The cost is $27 a person. The VNA also accepts the following insurances: American Progress (Today’s Options), Advantra Freedome, Aetna Medicare Advantage, Federal Employee Program, First Priority, First Priority 65, Gateway Assured, Geisinger Gold, Geisinger Health Plan, Highmark Freedom Blue PPO, Humana Gold, Medicare Part B, Secure Horizons, Keystone Senior Blue and Unison Advantage.
Source: nursefuture.com

Medicare Targets Health Plans With Low Ratings

Medicare officials are encouraging 525,000 beneficiaries to switch out of these 26 Medicare Advantage and drug plans that have received low ratings for three consecutive years and enroll in better plans for next year. The poor performing plans will have this warning symbol next to their names on Medicare’s plan finder website to steer shoppers to other plans.
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Health America www.EasyToInsureME.com

This entry was posted on July 29, 2008 at 7:13 pm and is filed under a, america, blue cross pa, coventry, coventry health america, cvty, harrisburg, healh insurance pennsylvania, health, health america, health america one, health insurance, health insurance pa, healthamerica, healthamerica com, healthamerica cvty, healthamerica cvty com, insurance, lancaster, low cost health insurance pa, low cost pa health insurance, ohio, pa, pa health insurance, phila, philadelphia, pittsburgh, ppo, scranton, www healthamerica com, www healthamerica cvty. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
Source: wordpress.com

NH Hospital Keeps Medicare Funding Despite Outbreak

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Thousands of patients in Arizona, Georgia, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, New York and Pennsylvania have since been tested for hepatitis C, a blood-borne viral infection that can cause liver disease and chronic health issues. In addition to the New Hampshire patients, a handful of patients in Kansas and one in Maryland have been found to carry the strain Kwiatkowski carries.
Source: cbslocal.com

Video: Romney, Ryan defend Medicare plan with NH voters

N.H. hospital in danger of losing Medicare funding

“CMS has determined that the deficiencies are of such a serious nature as to substantially limit the hospital’scapacity to provide adequate care,” the agency wrote in a letter to the hospital dated Oct. 11. In a statement Friday, the hospital said it will continue to work to thoroughly address each of the agency’s findings and that it already has taken steps to resolve many of them and is confident it will fix the rest in the next several weeks. “We take quality and patient safety extremely seriously and will continue to make all necessary improvements to further improve the health system,” CEO Kevin Callahan said. The centers’ full report won’t be made public for 30 days or when CMS receives an acceptable plan of correction, whichever comes first, a CMS spokeswoman said. The letter sent to the hospital outlines four areas where Medicare conditions have not been met: infection control, patient’s rights, the hospital’s quality assessment and performance improvement program and its governing body. In the July report, CMS said nurses at the cardiac lab left syringes unattended after removing medication from machines. The hospital has since implemented a policy that requires filled syringes to be placed in a locked drawer until needed. Kwiatkowski, a traveling medical worker whom prosecutors describe as a “serial infector,” was hired in Exeter in April 2011 after working in 18 hospitals in Arizona, Georgia, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, New York and Pennsylvania. He moved from hospital to hospital despite having been fired twice over allegations of drug use and theft. Thousands of patients in those states are being tested to see if they, too, were infected with hepatitis C, a sometimes life-threatening virus. A handful of patients in Kansas also have been found to carry the same strain Kwiatkowski carries. “Hospitals across the country and the regulators who oversee them continue to learn from this tragic event that was created by an alleged criminal who circumvented some of the best systems and protocols at leading institutions across the nation,” Callahan said. Kwiatkowski, who has told authorities he did not steal or use drugs, has pleaded not guilty to illegally obtaining drugs and tampering with a consumer product. Prosecutors recently were given until Nov. 30 to indict him after saying they needed more time because investigators are still conducting interviews and performing scientific analysis in multiple states.
Source: modernhealthcare.com

Senior Care in Rochester, NH: Open Enrollment for Medicare –Now through Dec 7, 2012

Would a small increase in premiums result in a large reduction in health care costs you pay? Check, for example, what coverage is available for prescription drugs you take? Medicare representatives can create a report containing the costs and benefits of various insurance products if you supply them with a list of your drug prescriptions. Ask questions about participating doctors and clinics. Some Medicare Advantage plans limit which physicians a patient can visit.
Source: atlantichomelifeseniorcare.com

The Hunt is Afoot For Medicare Part D

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

DownWithTyranny!: What Do NH

Lee Rogers is an innovative surgeon who’s internationally acclaimed practice centers on preventing amputation. McKeon’s disdain for their neighbors and his vote to kill Medicare helped persuade Lee to jump into the race. He and McKeon have something in common though. Neither liked Obamacare. McKeon just wants to– and has voted to– kill it. Lee wants to capitalize on what’s good in the bill and fix what isn’t. And Carol is a grassroots organizer who’s as close to the street as any politician is likely to be. She’s as likely to do anything that would adversely impact her neighbors as she would harm her own family. In the last weeks of the campaign, both these challengers are in tight races and both can use some last minute help. If you can, they’re both on the same page– this page.
Source: blogspot.com

VIDEO: Kuster Talks Medicare in Salem

Kuster spoke to about 10 seniors at the Greystone Farm assisted living facility on Main Street Monday morning and read excerpts from the book she wrote with her mother, former longtime state legislator Susan McLane, called “The Last Dance: Facing Alzheimer’s with Love & Laughter.”
Source: patch.com

Lamar & Bob Talk Medicare Cuts and Other TN Fiscal Cliff Notes

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

DesJarlais, of Jasper, Tenn., was one of 234 members of his caucus who listened in on a conference call Thursday with House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio. Boehner said the House will return to work Sunday at 6:30 p.m. and remain in session in case lawmakers and President Barack Obama reach agreement on a deal to avoid more than $600 billion in tax increases and spending cuts that will otherwise take effect on Tuesday. Economists fear the combination could jar the nation’s economy back into recession.
Source: knoxnews.com

Video: 2013 Medicare Plans in Tennessee – TN Medicare Supplements and Advantage Plans

Medicare agrees to cover TMS treatment for depression in TN, GA, AL

“TMS will now be available to more patients, giving them the hope of living a life free of depression,” said Burton Hills-based Dr. Scott West, who was the first local psychiatrist to acquire the TMS machine, a space-age contraption that looks similar to a dentist’s chair. West has been using TMS to treat patients since 2010. (See our September magazine story here.)
Source: nashvillepost.com

Social Security COLA and Tax highlights for 2013

The Social Security cost-of-living (COLA) adjustment for 2013 is 1.7%. This means the monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) will be increased 1.7% over their 2012 rate. The previous rate increase from 2011 to 2012 was 3.6%. The increase is based to keep Social Security and SSI benefits in line with national inflation.
Source: tntaxaccounting.com

An explanation of Medicare

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

When I'm 64 by MuffetPart D is coverage for prescription drugs, and like Part C, the program is administered by private insurance companies. Part D plans have their own list of covered medicines, with a tiered pricing system. This means that some drugs, such as generics, may be in the lowest tier and have the lowest copayment. Drugs in the highest tiers would have the highest copayment. If you sign up for a Part D plan when you are first eligible you avoid paying a penalty. A penalty would be assessed if you don’t join when you were first eligible and you don’t have other drug coverage or don’t receive “Extra Help”. Beneficiaries with limited income and assets may qualify for “Extra Help” to help pay for prescription drugs. This program is administered through the Social Security program and Medicare. For more information, please visit www.SSA.gov/prescriptionhelp/.
Source: utu.org

Video: What is A PFFS Plan

Cigna Cancels Medicare PFFS plans for 2011

This may be the first of many announcements from Medicare Advantage providers that they will not renew plans for 2011. New rules requiring companies to establish a provider network will prompt plans in all but a few counties to eliminate PFFS plans in 2011. 
Source: mysenioradvisorsgroup.com

Newsroom – Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan broadens Medicare options with new Medicare Advantage PPO product

October 1 is the first day BCBSM and Medicare Advantage carriers across the nation can market their Medicare Advantage products for 2010. Beneficiaries in BCBSM Medicare Advantage products will receive letters in the next 10 days about the new product line-up. "Blue Cross remains fully committed to providing products to Medicare beneficiaries and will continue to have the broadest array of Medicare Advantage products in the state," said Mark Owen, BCBSM vice president for federal and individual business. "It’s important for Medicare beneficiaries to know that there is no immediate change to their coverage. They have until the end of the year to make their selection for 2010." In addition to the three BCBSM products for 2010, seniors also can select from three Medicare Advantage products offered by Blue Care Network, the BCBSM-affiliated HMO. "We will be working with insurance agents and other groups across the state to reach out to Medicare beneficiaries to help them navigate these product and premium changes," said Owen. Seniors who meet low income guidelines can receive subsidies from the state and/or federal government to pay for all or part of their premiums. Medicare Advantage premiums vary by product and region. The new PPO product is expected to provide beneficiaries with value for their premium. For example, the BCBSM Medicare Plus Blue PPO, which includes Part D prescription drug coverage, will cost between $61 and $141 a month (premiums vary by geographic region), while traditional BCBSM Medicare Supplemental (Medigap) Plan C plans cost $183 when combined with a stand-alone Part D BCBSM prescription drug program. Medicare Advantage plans offer Medicare benefits through private health insurance plans and most include Part D prescription drug coverage. When you purchase a Medicare Advantage plan, you do not need to also purchase a Medigap policy. Medicare Advantage plans are regulated solely by the federal government, while Medigap plans are regulated by the state. The announced product changes are only for Medicare beneficiaries who directly purchase their Medicare Advantage products, not for beneficiaries enrolled in a group plan. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are nonprofit corporations and independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
Source: bcbsm.com

CIGNA PFFS MEDICARE Plans ???

CIGNA has some good plans in some counties in Upstate, NY area……..I completed the CIGNA certification,,,and would like to sell there plans however trying to get enrollment materials for 2009 is not possable…ALL log- ins do not work……..My FMO can not even get through their VERY bad customer service for agents….CIGNA does NOT have a agent service 800 number…….when you call they say call your FMO………NO BROKER service at all…Has anyone had this or any other expericense with CIGNA…any ideas on how to get enrollment materials?? or a secret phone number to call……Right now if they can not service me how are they going to service my clients????……..Any one out their deal with CIGNA MEDICARE before?? Mike King Rochester, NY
Source: insurance-forums.net

Fewer Medicare Advantage Plans for Seniors

In the ongoing legislative tussle over how to trim the Medicare program to help pay for a health care overhaul, the Senate recently voted down an amendment by Senator Orrin G. Hatch, Republican of Utah, that would have blocked planned cuts to the subsidies that private insurers receive under the Medicare Advantage program. The extra money, 14 percent more per beneficiary on average than the government pays for seniors in traditional Medicare, has been targeted by the Democratic leadership and the White House as a giveaway to insurance companies that unfairly raises premiums for all Medicare beneficiaries.
Source: nytimes.com

Medicare Advantage PFFS Plans Slowy Disappearing

A new MIPPA law in 2008 required PFFS plans to start having a network in most counties starting in 2011.  The few counties that were excluded were typically rural counties.  This forced the PFFS plans to either drop their plan or go out and create a network.  The result was the PFFS plans being dropped for the most part.  You will be able to find some PFFS plans still in 2011, and there will be some in 2012 as well.  As stated before though, they are few and far between now.  Some Medicare beneficiaries will see this as an improvement since they will be able to use a directory to look up a doctor.
Source: medicare-plans.net

CIGNA Will Drop PFFS Plan In Arizona For 2011

The change is not entirely unexpected. On February 1, CIGNA announced that it would close its PFFS plans to prospective enrollees who are already receiving Medicare benefits under another plan during the OEP. Despite the fact that the PFFS plan provides Medicare health services to more than 100,000 enrollees and the PFFS plans have experienced significant enrollment growth in the past three years, CIGNA indicated again in May that it was considering a move away from the PFFS business.
Source: azmedicare.info

Carriers Dumping Medicare Advantage Private Fee

Medicare Advantage plans are specific types of Medicare plans that are in place to cover the cost of healthcare related expenses for Medicare participants. These plans are similar to traditional Medicare plans in that they provide financial support for individuals seeking medical or health-related services. However, Medicare Advantage plans generally have more benefits and lower copayments than other types of Medicare plans. In order to have a Medicare Advantage plan, Medicare participants need to have Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B plans.
Source: medicaidbuyin.org

Deforming Medicare into a Competitive Bidding System (part 1)

FEHBP requires that all plans cover the same medical services. In spite of this, some plans offer more dental and vision coverage than others. However, the primary “choice” is whether to pay now or pay later. Those who choose plans with lower premiums (taken out of biweekly or monthly pay-checks) face higher deductibles and co-payments when they actually need medical care. Often this results in higher overall cost to those who choose what looks like a less-expensive plan. Seeing physicians “out of network” costs more in a “basic”plan than in a “standard” or “high option” plan. We know from many studies that higher co-payments lead low- and even middle-income people to postpone needed medical care. Since FEHBP premiums are independent of the employee’s income, lower-wage workers are likely to choose a “basic” plan and thus face the barrier of higher costs when they have to seek care. And many, of course, will not be able to afford to pay for any plan.
Source: correntewire.com

Comparing Medicare Supplemental Insurance Benefits

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

MORE DIRTY TRICKS FROM YOUR SOCIALIST/MARXIST   PRESIDENT AND HIS NASTY LITTLE ADMINISTRATION HACKS by SS&SSThese plans, called “Medigap” plans, each have different medical care coverage. Variable benefits of coverage to be considered are: • Coinsurance plus coverage that last 365 days after medicare benefits end (Medicare Part A) • Coinsurance/Copayment for medicare part B. • Pints of blood (transfusions, first three pints) • Hospice care copayments or coinsurance • Coinsurance for Skilled Nursing Facilities • Part A medicare deductible • Part B medicare deductible • Part B excess charges • Emergencies during foreign travel • Preventative care coinsurance, per Medicare Part B If any of these are important for you to have covered, comparing medicare supplemental plans that include benefits is the only way to ensure they are included.
Source: seniorcorps.org

Video: Compare Medicare Supplements-Medicare Supplements Compared

Summit Medigap: What Is Medicare Supplement Plan F?

The basic and original coverages provided by Medicare are Part A (hospitalization) and Part B (doctor visits and required medical equipment). Currently, there are at least 11 supplement plans referred to as Medigap policies that fill any coverage gaps involved with Parts A and B. One of these is Plan F. It’s important to know that not every company offers all 11 supplement plans. However, if they do offer at least 2 of them, they are required to offer Plans C and F. Plan F premiums typically cost between $65 and $295 per month. The premium will vary depending on the insurance carrier and the state you live in. Coverage Provided By Plan F The coverage required of Medigap coverage plans is mandated and regulated by the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare. Plan F also has a “high deductible” plan because it will not pay for any type of services covered by Medicare until the plan beneficiary has paid an out-of-pocket minimum of $2,000. Once that deductible has been met, Plan F will cover 100% of the co-insurances, co-pays, and deductibles of Parts A and B including hospice care co-insurance as well as preventative services. If you get the regular Plan F you will have no deductibles or coinsurance. When speaking to an insurance professional it’s important to make sure which Plan F you are being quoted. Comparisons There are only two supplements that covers any deductible expense of Part B, one of which is Medicare supplement Plan F. Additionally, this is the only supplementary plan that covers excess Part B charges. These charges typically accrue if doctors can legally charge more than what Medicare considers as reasonable service charges. Other supplement plans will usually pay for expenses that Medicare classifies as allowable. Finally, the excess amount that is allowable according to Medicare is covered by F. Is Plan F Right For You? Medicare supplement Plan F is viewed as one of the most popular plans because it covers 100% of the gaps encountered with Plans A and B meaning that it provides the highest amount of coverage of any of the Medigap insurance plans. For many individuals, the plan may seem a bit confusing initially. However, if you answer a few questions, it will not only explain the plan more thoroughly, you will be able to decide whether or not it is right for you. Basically, if you are someone who is willing to pay for 100% coverage, then this plan is tailored to meet your personal needs. With Medicare supplement Plan F, your only expenses will be your monthly premiums. For more information regarding this supplement plan, you can visit the official Medicare website or speak to a licensed insurance professional.
Source: blogspot.com

MedicareSupplementShop.com ? Compare Medicare Supplement Plans, Get Quotes!

There are many Prograde supplements exciting and valuable elements to the website. While searching at all of your Medicare Supplement Plans, you can effortlessly compare distinct portions of the plan and comprehend the different expenses and positive aspects at the identical time. This comparing quotes web page contains simple to adhere to methods and several valuable hints. The web page also has easily laid out grids, so you can compare diverse plans side by side, with out confusion or uncertainty about what your plan will have to supply.
Source: trevorchan.org

Compare Medicare Supplements

When you compare Medicare Supplements you should also be aware that attained age-rated-rated plans are based on your age when you apply. Premiums are usually low when you are 65. After a decade, these plans may be the most expensive and if your health fails, you may not be able to change plans to lower your premiums.
Source: healthbhg.com

What Medigap Insurance Has That Medicare Advantage Doesn’t

Compare this to Medicare Advantage plans. Plans are not standardized and vary from company to company. The same named plan may even include different benefits depending on the County where it is offered. Because of the moving parts, shopping for and comparing Medicare Advantage plans is much more difficult and can result in less certainty that you have actually chosen the best plan for your circumstances.
Source: medicareprofs.com

How hospice and Medicare supplements work together

Children who are intervening with parents’ affairs are often confronted with keeping Medicare Supplement insurance while Hospice pays the majority of expenses, sometimes making the supplement unnecessary.  You should be aware that there are some expenses, like medical equipment and prescription drugs, that are not covered by Hospice.  These services are then covered 80/20 by Medicare and the supplement.  The risk you run is if you drop the supplement, you are then paying the 20% yourself.
Source: medicareplansstcharles.com

San Francisco Medicare Supplement Plans and Rates

Finding the right Medicare Rx plans is another research project for you.  Every year during the annual open enrollment period from October 15th through December 7th, all Medicare Part D Rx members can and should compare their current Drug plan to what is going to be available the following year.  All plans change a little each year.   Deductibles may change, drugs may be taken off of the formulary list, premiums can go up or down.  But, the biggest factor is how the plan pays for your medication list.  For help deciding which plan works best for your med list, feel free to call anytime.
Source: wordpress.com

Business Owners Learn the Hard Way about High Income Penalties with Medicare

PRLog (Press Release) – Jan. 24, 2013 – Most business owners try to cut expenses so that their organizations can increase the bottom line and efficiency.   Manager meetings and board meetings will soley exist at times just to figure out ways to cut costs.  Several years ago there was a method dealing with health insurance that helped businesses save money; however, due to Medicare changes this option could end up costing you more if you are not careful.   We are talking about business owners 65+ leaving the group health plan.  Having a sixty-five year old off the group health plan and having their coverage provided by Medicare and a Medicare Supplement (which equals better coverage) should mean everyone walks away happy.  This was the case several years ago, but now it takes a little more evaluation to see if it is best for all parties involved.   Medicare has implemented a high income penalty, that changed the way business owners should analyze their health insurance once they become eligible for Medicare.  This penalty starts with incomes as low as $85,000 for individuals and $170,000 for couples.  The cost of this penalty or tax whichever you would like to call it, starts at roughly $50 and goes up to roughly $285 per month/per individual. So let’s take a basic example of a husband and wife both 65.  They own a business and are in the highest income tax bracket. • Group Health Insurance – $700 per month for the couple (Medical and Drug) • Medicare Part A – Free, • Medicare Part B – $335.70 per month individually (includes high income penalty) • Medicare Part D – $100 per month individually (includes high income penalty) • Medicare Supplement – $100 per month (rates available at www.medicareinsurancefinders.com) Total Monthly Cost of Medicare Option Per Person = $565.70 COUPLE COST COMPARISON – MEDICARE vs. GROUP HEALTH Group Health – $700   vs. Medicare Option – $1,131.40 Business owners should consider their options carefully before making any decisions to get on Medicare.  Realize that their are enrollment periods with Medicare and they can be very strict.  Medicare Insurance Finders and MWG Senior Services have advisors that can help analyze your Medicare options.
Source: prlog.org

Cancel Medicare Advantage

Because of their flexibility, the ability to move states and the fact that the insurance company cannot change the plan are just a few of the reasons we prefer Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans to MAPD. If you would like to hear more about the reasons a Medicare Supplement can be a better fit for your insurance, please fill out the short form at the top of the page and one of our experts will get you a new medicare supplement quote and help explain how you can save the most off your medicare cost.
Source: medicarecost.net

Agent Pipeline Offers Cigna Medicare Supplement Solutions

Anytime we have the opportunity to offer a product from a carrier as prestigious and trusted as Cigna, we’re happy to do so. Cigna and its predecessor companies have been in the insurance field for more than 200 years. It is active in 30 countries and has 71 million customer relationships around the world. As a National Marketing Organization (NMO), we are pleased to be able to offer FMO, MGA and agent level contracts to our network of partners in the Senior Market.
Source: agentpipeline.com

BCBS, Priority Health rank highest in state for Medicaid, Medicare

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

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

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

Newsroom – Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan broadens Medicare options with new Medicare Advantage PPO product

October 1 is the first day BCBSM and Medicare Advantage carriers across the nation can market their Medicare Advantage products for 2010. Beneficiaries in BCBSM Medicare Advantage products will receive letters in the next 10 days about the new product line-up. "Blue Cross remains fully committed to providing products to Medicare beneficiaries and will continue to have the broadest array of Medicare Advantage products in the state," said Mark Owen, BCBSM vice president for federal and individual business. "It’s important for Medicare beneficiaries to know that there is no immediate change to their coverage. They have until the end of the year to make their selection for 2010." In addition to the three BCBSM products for 2010, seniors also can select from three Medicare Advantage products offered by Blue Care Network, the BCBSM-affiliated HMO. "We will be working with insurance agents and other groups across the state to reach out to Medicare beneficiaries to help them navigate these product and premium changes," said Owen. Seniors who meet low income guidelines can receive subsidies from the state and/or federal government to pay for all or part of their premiums. Medicare Advantage premiums vary by product and region. The new PPO product is expected to provide beneficiaries with value for their premium. For example, the BCBSM Medicare Plus Blue PPO, which includes Part D prescription drug coverage, will cost between $61 and $141 a month (premiums vary by geographic region), while traditional BCBSM Medicare Supplemental (Medigap) Plan C plans cost $183 when combined with a stand-alone Part D BCBSM prescription drug program. Medicare Advantage plans offer Medicare benefits through private health insurance plans and most include Part D prescription drug coverage. When you purchase a Medicare Advantage plan, you do not need to also purchase a Medigap policy. Medicare Advantage plans are regulated solely by the federal government, while Medigap plans are regulated by the state. The announced product changes are only for Medicare beneficiaries who directly purchase their Medicare Advantage products, not for beneficiaries enrolled in a group plan. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are nonprofit corporations and independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
Source: bcbsm.com

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas Health Insurance Quotes and Plan Review

For Texas residents looking for health care, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas is one of the top health insurance companies to consider in the state. Learning about Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas medical insurance plans is even more important when one realizes that within the Unites States there cost of health care keeps rising and with it the uninsured rate keeps rising steadily. It is estimated that about 47 million Americans are living without Health Insurance coverage, when in 2006 there were about 46.4 million without Health Insurance. Middle class citizens are having trouble paying their bills and some people just cannot afford health insurance coverage at the moment. As the nation tries to do something about it, private insurance companies have tried to lower the rates to attract more customers and make it easier for people to sign up for the so long wished health insurance.
Source: c-tides.org

Florida Blue Is New Name for BCBS of Florida

They are also trying to decrease or hold steady their Medicare supplement rates while competitor AARP is increasing their supplement rates by 5%.  This new approach is a welcome change from the old BCBS of Florida who seemed to rely on their name recognition and less on robust benefits or a value based approach.  In less than a week the new benefit information for 2013 will be released.  Starting on October 15th you will be able to enroll into one of the Florida Blue plans if you want.  I will have updated information on this site so check back regularly.  If you have not already, sign up for my free mini-course in the upper right hand corner!
Source: medicare-plans.net

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

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas Medicare Supplement Plan

Medicare Supplement Insurance in Texas, like all other traditional forms of coverage does have rate increases and I dislike them as much as you do. BCBS seems to have some of the most stable rates in the industry, where some carriers have pounded the rates some 10 and 12% these guys have not exhibited that type of behavior. They actually experienced a rate decrease this last October which was a pleasant surprise to most seniors. Of course there is no way of knowing what may or may not happen from one year to the next so yes, they could raise rates soon, but so far so good.
Source: medicareinsurancetexas.com

CPH One Of Four Alaska Hospitals That Could Face Penalty From Medicare

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

OBAMAS DEATH PANEL------ GUESS WHAT FOLKS IT'S ALIVE AND WELL---"CRAZY PALIN" NOT SO CRAZY NOW by SS&SSThe hospital hasn’t been fined yet.  CMS was authorized to begin reducing payments to hospitals with too many readmissions on October first.  Central Peninsula Hospital is one of four in the state identified in a Kaiser Health report as eligible for the penalty, joining the Alaska Native Medical Center in Anchorage, Mat-Su Regional Health Center in Palmer and the Yukon Kuskokwim Regional Medical Center in Bethel.
Source: kdll.org

Video: Medicine Dish: Medicaid and Medicare Data for American Indians and Alaska Natives

Travel for Seniors: Alaska

This post is a guest post by John Walters who is a freelance writer who attended the 1973 Clarion West science fiction writing workshop and is a member of Science Fiction Writers of America.  He writes mainstream fiction, science fiction and fantasy, and memoirs of his wanderings around the world.  For many years he lived in Greece with his Greek wife and five sons and taught English as a second language to help pay the bills, but he has recently moved back to the United States and now lives in San Diego. 
Source: medicareecompare.com

Mathematica Policy Research

Disability  Early Childhood  Education   Family Support     Health      International      Labor         Nutrition   
Source: mathematica-mpr.net

As Alaska Goes, So Goes…

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

ACA boosts Medicaid payments for primary care services

The payment increases are designed to encourage physicians, nurse practitioners, and other primary care providers to accept Medicaid patients. Many providers have stopped accepting Medicaid patients due to the program’s low reimbursement rates. Each state program pays primary care providers at a different rate, but the national average for Medicaid payments for primary care services is 59% of the Medicare fee schedule. One of the ACA’s key provisions is expanding Medicaid coverage to more Americans; but that extension is moot if providers refuse to take patients with the plan.
Source: bartonassociates.com

Alaska Medicaid Expansion: Don’t Do It

When the U.S. Supreme Court gave the green light to Obamacare, it struck down the power of the federal government to force states to expand their Medicaid programs. As it was passed by Congress, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), mandated that all states expand Medicaid coverage to include those earning income up to 138% of the federal poverty level. If any state refused to do so, the federal government could take away all federal Medicaid funding, even the Medicaid funding that existed prior to the passage of the ACA. The Court ruled that this component of the ACA exceeded the authority of the federal government and struck it down because that portion of the law constituted an undue coercion on sovereign states to comply with the wishes of the centralized federal government.
Source: alaskapolicyforum.org

Study Finds Premium Support Plan Could Raise Medicare Premiums In Many Parts of Country

The study modeled the impact of a generic version of premium support, under which beneficiaries would receive a defined subsidy, or voucher, to buy health insurance in a competitive market instead of getting a guaranteed set of benefits as Medicare has traditionally provided. That payment would be tied to the second lowest cost plan offered in an area or traditional Medicare, whichever is lower. This kind of a change is a central part of the House Republican budget written by Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, now the GOP’s vice-presidential candidate, and it has also been embraced by GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney. Even a few Democrats have flirted with such a plan as a way to leverage market efficiency to rein in the spiraling cost of Medicare.
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Alaska News Nightly: November 28, 2012

Children’s brains are like sponges. They soak up languages and absorb impressions of the world. But this also means their minds retain bad experiences, like domestic violence. Prevention programs in Sitka are working with young kids to give them the tools they need to process feelings and become more resilient. In part one of a two-part series, KCAW’s Anne Brice explores programs that aim to create personal connections through group activities.
Source: alaskapublic.org

Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield Medicare Supplement Plans Are Affordable…

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Based in beautiful Jackson Hole, Wyoming, we currently market health insurance in 18 different states from our website IndividualHealth.com. I have worked in the domestic and international markets for most of my adult life. Recently we launched a newly revamped website www.tetonmarketing.com which has a primary focus on music and Native American Flutes and hand crafted items made in Wyoming. Check it out! I want the Insurance Simplified Blog to be a place you can visit from time to time and read about real world issues that individuals and families face daily. Our parent website IndividualHealth.com we like to think of as a virtual brochure. But with the blog I want to talk about the topics behind the brochure. Also check out our blog www.JacksonHoleTim.com which is “All Things Wyoming, Everything Jackson Hole” . If you love the Yellowstone basin this is blog for you! Then when you are ready check out our new Social Network site Jacksonholetim.ning.com – this is a place you can connect with other who visit and live in Wyoming. And finally we have just launched another new blog. Jackson Hole Tim (www.jacksonholetim.com) is a new place to visit that talks about “All things Wyoming, Everything Jackson Hole”. I hope you find these blog helpful.
Source: wordpress.com

Video: Excellus BCBS Medicare plan travels with you

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas Health Insurance Quotes and Plan Review

For Texas residents looking for health care, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas is one of the top health insurance companies to consider in the state. Learning about Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas medical insurance plans is even more important when one realizes that within the Unites States there cost of health care keeps rising and with it the uninsured rate keeps rising steadily. It is estimated that about 47 million Americans are living without Health Insurance coverage, when in 2006 there were about 46.4 million without Health Insurance. Middle class citizens are having trouble paying their bills and some people just cannot afford health insurance coverage at the moment. As the nation tries to do something about it, private insurance companies have tried to lower the rates to attract more customers and make it easier for people to sign up for the so long wished health insurance.
Source: c-tides.org

Manchester & Kennebec Valley Residents, are you maximizing your Medicare Advantage Benefits with Sliver Sneakers?

I am a mom of three teenage boys. Our family has struggled with multiple chronic health issues for many years. It was for this reason that I became interested in Xocai healthy chocolate. Our entire family eats healthy chocolate every day as a supplement and I am currently losing weight with the Xocai X-protein meal shake. I have struggled with Fibromyalgia for over 10 years. If you are struggling with your health, you owe it to yourself to check this out. This is the best way I have found to incorporate significant antioxidants into our diet. Feel free to email me if you have any questions. I look forward to hearing from you!
Source: healthchocoholic.com

Newsroom – Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan broadens Medicare options with new Medicare Advantage PPO product

October 1 is the first day BCBSM and Medicare Advantage carriers across the nation can market their Medicare Advantage products for 2010. Beneficiaries in BCBSM Medicare Advantage products will receive letters in the next 10 days about the new product line-up. "Blue Cross remains fully committed to providing products to Medicare beneficiaries and will continue to have the broadest array of Medicare Advantage products in the state," said Mark Owen, BCBSM vice president for federal and individual business. "It’s important for Medicare beneficiaries to know that there is no immediate change to their coverage. They have until the end of the year to make their selection for 2010." In addition to the three BCBSM products for 2010, seniors also can select from three Medicare Advantage products offered by Blue Care Network, the BCBSM-affiliated HMO. "We will be working with insurance agents and other groups across the state to reach out to Medicare beneficiaries to help them navigate these product and premium changes," said Owen. Seniors who meet low income guidelines can receive subsidies from the state and/or federal government to pay for all or part of their premiums. Medicare Advantage premiums vary by product and region. The new PPO product is expected to provide beneficiaries with value for their premium. For example, the BCBSM Medicare Plus Blue PPO, which includes Part D prescription drug coverage, will cost between $61 and $141 a month (premiums vary by geographic region), while traditional BCBSM Medicare Supplemental (Medigap) Plan C plans cost $183 when combined with a stand-alone Part D BCBSM prescription drug program. Medicare Advantage plans offer Medicare benefits through private health insurance plans and most include Part D prescription drug coverage. When you purchase a Medicare Advantage plan, you do not need to also purchase a Medigap policy. Medicare Advantage plans are regulated solely by the federal government, while Medigap plans are regulated by the state. The announced product changes are only for Medicare beneficiaries who directly purchase their Medicare Advantage products, not for beneficiaries enrolled in a group plan. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are nonprofit corporations and independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
Source: bcbsm.com

Florida Blue Is New Name for BCBS of Florida

They are also trying to decrease or hold steady their Medicare supplement rates while competitor AARP is increasing their supplement rates by 5%.  This new approach is a welcome change from the old BCBS of Florida who seemed to rely on their name recognition and less on robust benefits or a value based approach.  In less than a week the new benefit information for 2013 will be released.  Starting on October 15th you will be able to enroll into one of the Florida Blue plans if you want.  I will have updated information on this site so check back regularly.  If you have not already, sign up for my free mini-course in the upper right hand corner!
Source: medicare-plans.net

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas Medicare Supplement Plan

Medicare Supplement Insurance in Texas, like all other traditional forms of coverage does have rate increases and I dislike them as much as you do. BCBS seems to have some of the most stable rates in the industry, where some carriers have pounded the rates some 10 and 12% these guys have not exhibited that type of behavior. They actually experienced a rate decrease this last October which was a pleasant surprise to most seniors. Of course there is no way of knowing what may or may not happen from one year to the next so yes, they could raise rates soon, but so far so good.
Source: medicareinsurancetexas.com

Medicare Targets Health Plans With Low Ratings

Medicare officials are encouraging 525,000 beneficiaries to switch out of these 26 Medicare Advantage and drug plans that have received low ratings for three consecutive years and enroll in better plans for next year. The poor performing plans will have this warning symbol next to their names on Medicare’s plan finder website to steer shoppers to other plans.
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Don’t Forget Your Medicare 8 Hours

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Kinky For Governor by Big Grey MareNo licensee who was initially licensed in Texas PRIOR TO SEPTEMBER 1, 2012, shall be allowed to renew his or her chiropractic license at any time during calendar year 2013 unless he or she has completed the required eight hours of continuing education in coding and documentation for Medicare claims during either calendar year 2011 or 2012.Licensees who were initially licensed ON OR AFTER SEPTEMBER 1, 2012, must complete the eight hours of continuing education in coding and documentation for Medicare claims no later than ONE YEAR after their initial licensure in order to be eligible to renew their licenses at their next renewal date on or following the first annual anniversary of their original licensure date.
Source: chirotexas.org

Video: Hardball, Chris Matthews – Secession Obsession: LET THEM GO!!! HAPPY THANKSGIVING

Highlights from around the Capitol

Members of the Texas Classroom Teachers Association fanned out for a lobbying full-court press, meeting with state senators and representatives for their home districts and explaining how the loss of funding has prompted layoffs and wage freezes, larger class sizes and reductions in pre-kindergarten. Some teachers said cutbacks on janitorial staff have forced them to take out the garbage in their classrooms, while others complained that the loss of aides and librarians has them trying to be two places at once.
Source: wsls.com

Medicaid Eligibility in Texas

Following an initial check of the information, all applicants are required to visit a Health and Human Services Commission Benefits office. This visit interviews the applicant to ensure all information is present and correct – forming the final part of the application. Applicants who have specific reasons why they cannot travel to the Health and Human Services Commission Benefits office may be able to complete the review by telephone, or a representative may make a home visit.
Source: tex.org

USDOJ: Owner of Texas Durable Medical Equipment Companies Convicted in Fraud Scheme

A Texas federal judge convicted the owner of two Texas-based durable medical equipment companies today on multiple health care fraud charges following a five-day bench trial, announced Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department?s Criminal Division. Hugh Marion Willet, 69, of Fort Worth, Texas, was found guilty by United States District Judge Jane J. Boyle in the Northern District of Texas on all seven counts of the June 2012 second superseding indictment: one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud and six counts of health care fraud stemming from a durable medical equipment (DME) fraud scheme.  Willett?s wife, Jean Willett, previously pleaded guilty to the same charges and was sentenced in September 2012 to serve 50 months in prison.              The evidence at trial showed that between 2006 and 2010, the Willets co-owned and operated JS&H Orthopedic Supply LLC and Texas Orthotic and Prosthetic Systems Inc ., which claimed to provide orthotics and other DME to beneficiaries of Medicare and private insurance benefit programs including Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield and CIGNA.   Evidence presented in court proved that both of these companies intentionally submitted claims to Medicare and other insurers for products that were materially different from and more expensive than what was actually provided, and that Hugh Marion Willett was a knowing and willing participant in the fraud.      At sentencing, currently scheduled for April 18, 2013, Hugh Marion Willett faces a maximum potential penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine on each count.  The case is being prosecuted by Fraud Section Trial Attorney Ben O?Neil and Deputy Chief Sam Sheldon of the Justice Department?s Criminal Division.  The case was investigated by the FBI and the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG) and brought as part of the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, supervised by the Criminal Division?s Fraud Section. Since their inception in March 2007, strike force operations in nine locations have charged more than 1,480 defendants who collectively have falsely billed the Medicare program for more than $4.8 billion.  In addition, the HHS Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, working in conjunction with the HHS-OIG, are taking steps to increase accountability and decrease the presence of fraudulent providers. Contact: Department of Justice Main Switchboard – 202-514-2000 Reported by: US Department of Justice
Source: 7thspace.com

State Highlights: Texas Begins New Women’s Health Program

The Texas Tribune: Amid Legal Drama, Texas Takes Over Women’s Health Program Texas is funding the [Women’s Health Program] on its own because the federal government pulled funding after the state blocked Planned Parenthood from participating. The Texas version still serves low-income women who would qualify for Medicaid if they became pregnant. It will cover about 110,000 women between 18 and 44 years old with free well-woman exams, basic health care and certain family planning services. … The big change is where women can go for those services. Women using the plan may not receive any health care from Planned Parenthood or any medical provider “affiliated” with abortion providers (Philpott, 1/3).
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Medicare Covers Illegals, Incarcerated

The Center for Medicare and Medicaid services (CMS) paid more than $125 million to providers for treatment of 11,619 prison inmates and 2,575 individuals who were in the country illegally from 2009 through 2011, according to a pair of reports released Thursday by the inspector general of the Department of Health and Human Services.
Source: freebeacon.com

Why Premium Support? Restructure Medicare Advantage, Not Medicare

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

READ THE HEALTHCARE BILL NOW... by roberthuffstutterPremium support proponents argue that replacing public insurance with vouchers to purchase private (or public) coverage will harness market forces to contain costs. But the debate often ignores traditional Medicare’s administrative efficiency, purchasing power and the rewards to risk selection that accompany competition among plans. We show that despite Medicare Advantage (MA) plans’ success in enrolling beneficiaries, they have been unsuccessful in lowering costs. Except in 15 percent of counties, MA costs per beneficiary exceed costs for traditional Medicare. Fiscal prudence warrants limiting MA payments to 100 percent of traditional Medicare costs, while keeping payments to MA plans below traditional Medicare in the highest cost counties.
Source: urban.org

Video: 2011 HEAT Provider Compliance Training – Overview of Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

Raise the Medicare age for the good of all

“The quality and variety of the selections you will find on EducationViews.org is second-to-none on the internet today. Since 1997 we have been providing this service at no cost to education professionals, the public in general and policy makers. Hope you enjoy the articles and commentary. Please forward us to your friends and associates. EducationViews.org is maybe the most effective way to transforming educators. The daily email offers a direct and easy way for busy teachers to grow philosophically. I was skeptical, but once you open the email and decide to read a story, you are hooked and it becomes a daily ritual to check out what’s happening. Educating teachers as to what is really going on in the schools opens up a new worldview and vision of thinking most have not been exposed to. The end result, better informed teachers who have a more effective understanding of the principles that make academic achievement a reality. Great job. The more email addresses of educators you get on your list, the bigger the impact and the more kids you will positively influence.
Source: educationviews.org

MIAMI: Reports: Medicare paid $120M in illegal care

Under federal law, Medicare generally does not pay for services for either group of patients. But the program was billed for more than $33 million in inmate care and more than $91 million for illegal immigrant care over that period, according to the reports from the Department of Health and Human Services inspector general.
Source: heraldonline.com

Finding Ways to Educate and Counsel Medicare Consumers

In 1997, researchers from Georgetown University assisted the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) in identifying how RWJF could help organizations strengthen consumer information and education initiatives that would be undertaken in local communities to help residents understand changes in options under the implementation of Medicare+Choice.
Source: rwjf.org

Social Security and Medicare Taxes and Benefits Over a Lifetime

Notes: All amounts are in constant 2011 dollars as noted, adjusted to present value at age 65 using a 2 percent real interest rate. Each calculation assumes survival until age 65 and then adjusts for chance of death in all years after age 65. It also assumes that benefits scheduled in law will be paid even if trust funds are exhausted. Workers are assumed to work every year from age 22 to age 64 and retire at age 65 or the Normal Retirement Age. An average-wage worker earns the average wage in the economy every year, based on Social Security’s measure of the “average wage.” The low-wage worker earns 45 percent of the average wage, while the high-wage worker earns 160 percent of the average wage. The tax-max wage worker earns at the taxable maximum every year. Medicare numbers are net of premium, other than the new premium tax on some high earners.
Source: urban.org

How to save Medicare now: Start talking about how much we spend on end

Albert O. Shar, Ph.D., is managing principal at QERT and finds practical technical solutions to today’s real world problems. Previously, Shar was the first vice president of information technology at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and served as a senior program officer for the Pioneer Group, seeking innovative projects that catalyze fundamental breakthroughs in health and health care Before that, Shar was director for Information Technology Research and Architecture at the R.W. Johnson Pharmaceutical Institute, a Johnson & Johnson company, where he developed innovative ways to use IT to improve the drug discovery and development process. Prior to that, Shar held the positions of director of technology services, University of Pennsylvania Health System, and executive director and CIO, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He has held research and teaching professorships at the University of Pennsylvania, University of New Hampshire, Swiss Federal Polytechnic Institute and University of Colorado Shar is the author of more than 50 scholarly publications in medical technology, computer science, and pure and applied mathematics and holds a patent in medical imaging. Visit website
Source: medcitynews.com

Examples of Taxpayers Facing Medicare Tax Increase under Health Care Bill

The health care bill passed by the House of Represenatives on Sunday (Senate bill plus reconciliation) includes, among many other tax increases, two tax hikes on high-income taxpayers set to go into effect in 2013. One of the increases is a higher employee Medicare tax on wages earned above $250,000 (married; $200,000 for singles). The other tax hike is a 3.8 percent Medicare tax on investment income earned by couples earning more than $250,000 in modified adjusted gross income ($200,000 for singles). Investment income includes such sources as rental income, dividend income, interest income, income from trusts, and most capital gains.
Source: taxfoundation.org

Medicare Panel Calls for Repealing Sustainable Growth Rate Formula

Ten days after Congress voted to approve a temporary “doc fix,” the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission last week released a blueprint that calls for permanently repealing and replacing the sustainable growth rate formula — which is used to determine Medicare physician reimbursement rates,
Source: californiahealthline.org