News Article/Update on State Medicare Advantage Plans

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

The complete program information is now available on the CMS website for both the College Insurance Program (CIP) and the State Employees’ Group Health Program. The TRAIL Decision Guide includes an explanation of plan options, plan comparison chart, rate chart, coverage map, and contact information for the four plan administrators. The site also offers a comprehensive FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) sheet for CIP and State Employees.
Source: surs.com

Video: Eight Medicare tips for Raleigh residents turning 65

Interactive Chart: Medicare Spending At Individual Hospitals

The cost is also expressed as a ratio to the median amount Medicare spent per patient nationally (“Efficiency Index”). A result of 1 means Medicare spends about the same per patient at that hospital as it does per patient nationally. A result higher than 1 means that Medicare spends more per patient than the median. A result below 1 means that Medicare spends less per patient than the median. To allow for fair comparisons, Medicare adjusted its figures to take into account the health and diagnosis of patients and other factors.
Source: kaiserhealthnews.org

Medicare Home Health Compare

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

What Is Medicare Part D Insurance?

The amounts differ from year to year. There is a deductible at the beginning of each calendar year. Currently it is a maximum of $320.00. Not all prescriptions are covered by all plans. There are co-pays for prescriptions. Your Medicare Part D Insurance covers your prescription costs until you reach $2,930.00 in expense, the “Donut Hole” you will pay your prescription costs until you reach $4,700. Beginning in 2012, while you are in the “Donut Hole”, the manufacturer pays 50% of the cost of name brand drugs and 14% of the cost of generic drugs and you pay the remaining 50% or 14%. Choosing the Right Plan is Important
Source: seniorcorps.org

Daily Kos: One Fox News chart that will mislead you about welfare and jobs in three different ways

Sylv, RF, itchyredness, Gooserock, MMColo, Shockwave, Wintermute, CleverNickName, mslat27, eeff, saluda, lippythelion69, whenwego, rabel, roses, fumie, Iberian, wader, kharma, solliges, Catte Nappe, 2dot, Brian82, Oaktown Girl, WisVoter, Steven D, irate, Brooke In Seattle, Fury, CompaniaHill, BayAreaKen, jane123, dsteffen, Box of Rain, kkjohnson, Jim R, golem, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, myboo, Shakludanto, sailmaker, MJ via Chicago, twigg, gpoutney, dilireus, OMwordTHRUdaFOG, Dinclusin, SingerInTheChoir, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, daeros, Aaa T Tudeattack, Thinking Fella, Tamar, Habitat Vic, camlbacker, offgrid, CenterLeft, yoduuuh do or do not, nicteis, millwood, gizmo59, poligirl, Involuntary Exile, Buckeye Nut Schell, tofumagoo, Cassandra Waites, Gentle Giant, priceman, sagansong, Ellinorianne, billybam, spacecadet1, Magick Maven, maryabein, WiseFerret, MooseHB, IreGyre, stevenwag, ArthurPoet, eflos, Railfan, Amber6541, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, estreya, Polly Syllabic, tellthestories, elginblt, anonevent, Egalitare, DiegoUK, kenwards, Oh Mary Oh, wrpereir, slice, dot farmer, newusername, Onomastic, annieli, Mike08, kerflooey, Liberal Capitalist, Captain Pants, Mr MadAsHell, FarWestGirl, BarackStarObama, createpeace, peregrine kate, sound of progress, disconnect the dots, Dbug, ratcityreprobate, stlsophos, DRo, anodnhajo, Siri, IndieGuy, FloridaSNMOM, Horace Boothroyd III, Free Jazz at High Noon, BusyinCA, doroma, wxorknot, wasatch, ottoveil, Kvetchnrelease, simple serf, The grouch, BroadBlogs, DustBunny, Dan Schapiro, aresea, JerryNA, howabout, Pritty Brains, Theodore J Pickle, JustGiaco, OceanDiver, danjb, Rich452, Chas 981, dannyboy1, Dodgerdog1, justaHippie, Liberty Equality Fraternity and Trees, Capt Crunch, RightHeaded, Selphinea, IsaacKuo
Source: dailykos.com

2013 Cost Projections for Medicare Programs

This week’s charts compare the Medicare cost projections under current law assumption with more realistic alternative assumptions measured as a percentage of the economy. The Medicare Trustees’ Report presents an illustrative alternative scenario that assumes a continuation of the historical pattern of SGR overrides; the report also shows an another alternative scenario in which, in addition to an SGR override, certain controversial elements of the 2010 Affordable Care Act (ACA) are either scaled back during the period from 2020 to 2034 or eliminated altogether.
Source: mercatus.org

HRA vs HSA vs FSA vs PRA Comparison Chart

As a follow-up to yesterday’s HRA case studies, check out this HRA, HSA, FSA, PRA comparison chart. It’s a good summary of the key differences between the four primary types of health care reimbursement accounts and arrangements.
Source: zanebenefits.com

Health Care Reform and Hospice: NHPCO Releases New Comparison Chart

The United States Senate passed their version of the health reform bill on the morning of 12.24.09 (whew!

Commentary: Medicare a model of efficiency compared to Obamacare

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Flickr

‘+msg+’

‘;d.body.style.margin=’0′;d.body.innerHTML=html;}}},200);} function get_frame_depth(){var win=self,frame_depth=0;while(win!==win.parent){frame_depth+=1;win=win.parent;} return frame_depth;} function debug(){if(is_debug){console.log(arguments);}} if(self_is_flickr&&self_loc===top_loc){}else if(self_is_offline){}else if(!self_is_flickr&&!self_whitelist_regex.test(self_loc)){should_wipe=true;}else if(bust_image_search&&photo_id&&referrer_is_image_search){should_bust=true;}else if(referrer&&!referrer_is_whitelisted&&get_frame_depth()>0){should_wipe=true;}else if(!referrer_is_flickr&&get_frame_depth()>1){should_wipe=true;} if(is_debug){debug({self_is_flickr:self_is_flickr,top_loc:top_loc,self_loc:self_loc,referrer:referrer,self_is_offline:self_is_offline,self_is_flickr:self_is_flickr,self_url:self_url,photo_page_re_result:photo_page_re_result,photo_id:photo_id,referrer_is_flickr:referrer_is_flickr,referrer_is_whitelisted:referrer_is_whitelisted,referrer_is_image_search:referrer_is_image_search,self_is_whitelisted:self_whitelist_regex.test(self_loc),frame_depth:get_frame_depth(),faq_url:faq_url,redir_url:redir_url,should_bust:should_bust,should_wipe:should_wipe,base:base});}else{if(should_bust){setTimeout(function(){w.onbeforeunload=w.onunload=null;redirect();},1000);setTimeout(wipe,2000);redirect();}else if(should_wipe){wipe();}else if(referrer_is_whitelisted&&!referrer_is_flickr){base=document.createElement(‘base’);base.target=’_top';document.getElementsByTagName(‘head’)[0].appendChild(base);}}

}(‘We’re sorry, Flickr doesn’t allow embedding within frames.

If you’d like to view this content, please click here.’, ‘http://www.flickr.com’, true, false));

(function(F){var el,w,d,n,ua,ae,is_away_from_tab,de,disabled=false,assigned_events=false;w=window;d=w.document;n=w.navigator;ua=n&&n.userAgent;var supportsActiveElt=false;if(‘activeElement’in document){supportsActiveElt=true;} function doF(e,me){if(is_away_from_tab&&e.target===w){is_away_from_tab=false;}else{el=e.target||me;}} function doB(e){if(el!==w&&e.target===w){is_away_from_tab=true;}else{el=undefined;}} function get(){var nt,in_doc;if(supportsActiveElt){el=document.activeElement;}else if(el&&(nt=el.nodeType)){if(d.contains){if((ua&&ua.match(/Opera[s/]([^s]*)/))||nt===1){in_doc=d.contains(el);}else{while(el){if(d===el){in_doc=true;} el=el.parentNode;}}}else if(d.compareDocumentPosition){if(d===el||!!(d.compareDocumentPosition(el)&16)){in_doc=true;}}else{var myEl=el;while(myEl){if(d===myEl){in_doc=true;} myEl=myEl.parentNode;}}} return in_doc?el:undefined;} function isInput(){var n=get(),nn;if(!n){return false;} nn=n.nodeName.toLowerCase();return(nn===’input’||nn===’textarea’);} function instrumentInputs(){if(!assigned_events){var i,me,inputs=document.getElementsByTagName(‘input’),tas=document.getElementsByTagName(‘textarea’),nInputs=inputs.length,nTextAreas=tas.length;if(nInputs||nTextAreas){for(i=0;i



Dennis: I was surprised that SS cut my check that much also. However, when I checked it they first said, that was my first check, it would go up the next month. Well, when it did not go up, I called again and this time, I was assured it was correct, and who ever told me the check would be more the second month was mistaken, I would not be receiving anymore than the $670. I asked to speak with a supervisor and she informed me she was the supervisor, I had my explanation and that was all they could do for me. Today, I draw $841 per month, after I think it is 7 years. I am grateful to have my great grandchildren, they keep me busy, which is a good thing. My doctor says they are keeping me young. lol But I am raising them, the oldest one will be 15 in two weeks, I brought her home from the hospital at 2 days old. My second child is 3, I have had him since he was 8 weeks old. They are good kids, but of course, they are spoiled too. I had not planned to spend my retirement raising more children, but we just never now what God has planned. Thanks for the information on Obamacare. Government has never been involved in anything that they did not screw up. Someone said recently, if the government was in charge of the desert there would be a shortage of sand within 5 years. And I believe that. I personally think, we had the best health care system in the world anyway. The biggest problem with it, I think was mismanagement , excessive law suits and not enough honest oversight. I honestly think, the only thing wrong with Medicare and Medicaid is mismanagement and allowing all of the illegals in the country. However, Congress should never have been allowed to touch the funds either. They should have been invested and both medical and SS would be solid, allowing for a more decent percentage monthly payout to the retirees. When I listen to these educated politicians talk, it really grates on my nerves, as they lack any common sense at all. Hope you have a great week, it was nice hearing from you.
Source: marylandreporter.com

Video: Get A Free GAP $100 Gift Card

How to Prevent Medicare Card Identity Theft

Note: You’ll notice that your Medicare ID has one or two additional letters or numbers following the digits of the SSN. These identify what kind of beneficiary you are, according to the Social Security Administration. For example, the letter T mainly indicates that you are entitled to Medicare, but are not yet filed for Social Security retirement benefits; whereas W1 indicates that you are a widower who is eligible for Medicare through disability. For the purposes of your photocopy, it doesn’t matter whether you delete these final letters (or letter-number combinations) or leave them in.
Source: aarp.org

Xeljanz Cost with a Copay Card, Free Samples, Efficacy, & Side Effects: Gathering Rheumatoid Arthritis Patient Stories

New Year’s Eve, the Xeljanz arrived by the same FedEx guy who has brought me Redskin tickets several times. We chatted about RG3 (Robert Griffin III, our quarterback). When Katie Beth got home, she opened the box and took pictures of the loot. Then I put the bottle away until my vaccination waiting time ended. Today is four weeks since my shingles vaccine. So after my blood tests and pneumonia shot today, it will be time to find out. I’m nervous the same as with any new medication. But I’m also hopeful that this will finally be my opportunity for some relief.
Source: rawarrior.com

Daily Kos: A Software Engineer’s take on Healthcare.gov

I was moved from one department to another because they loved the application I had created for the department and wanted something similar but more complex.  A couple months after I started IT hired a “Team Lead” that only had one member of the team…me.  Then I found out that I was only 75% on the new department and 25% on the old department and had to complete the project in less than a year while maintaining my old application and answering to the IT manager, the new team lead (who know nothing but had a lot of ideas for my time), my former business area manager who wanted 100% of my time and the business area manager who expected a completed application without bothering to stand behind me when I requested time to work on it.  Her strategy was to wait until the application didn’t show up on the scheduled date and throw a fit at that point. Long story short…While everyone else played politics, threw me under the bus and spread every lie possible about me I was able to successfully deploy a web application by myself with over 120 pages to over 1K dedicated users with few problems.  Today, a year later, I am working elsewhere.  They have 4 developers (all making more than I ever did) doing my previous job….badly.  The “team lead” got my boss fired and took his position…and has had to explain to the board why a 3.5 million dollar project has failed.  I am sure he will be promoted to CIO in a couple of years.
Source: dailykos.com

Summer Journal Club, Week 4: Does Medicare Save Lives?

Patients who are admitted when they are eligible for Medicare die from these emergency conditions less often. Given that so many of those patients actually do sign up for Medicare, that’s an incredible sign that generous insurance like Medicare can, in fact, improve health at its most basic level — preventing death. Some number-crunching by the authors reveals the following results: Medicare eligibility is associated with a 14-20% reduction in 7-day mortality, a 7-9% reduction in 28-day mortality, and a 2-4% reduction in 1-year mortality relative to the 64-year-olds who provide a control sample. As they write, “The emergence of the effect within 7 days of admission suggests that the extra service or changes in the quality of services provided to Medicare-eligible patients have an immediate life-saving impact.”
Source: projectmillennial.org

Smart card plan proposed to combat Medicare fraud

Introduced by Senators Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Representatives Jim Gerlach (R-Pa.) and Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), the legislation would require the issuance to all Medicare beneficiaries of an upgraded, secure identity card–stripped of its current Social Security number identifier–that is similar to the Department of Defense’s Common Access card. This “smart card” would have a computer chip embedded in it with identifying information about the patient and the patient’s provider.
Source: fiercehealthit.com

Tri Cities On A Dime: FREE SAMPLES FOR FALL FROM QUALITY HEALTH

“The budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled, public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed lest Rome become bankrupt. People must again learn to work, instead of living on public assistance.”
Source: tricitiesonadime.com

Daily Kos: Medicaid will help more souls thanks to Obamacare

self-insuring employers?  I’m in county government and right now we’re working on our county’s 2014 Budget.  We’ll be reviewing insurance needs next Monday, and I know our “consultant” is an anti-“Obamacare” R.  He’s given untrue information before and I want to be prepared to counter him if he tries it again.  Especially since just over half the Court is anti-government (yeah, I know, why did they run for office if they’re anti-government), and especially anti-ACA.  Partly because many of them are small business owners and partly because they get their information about the ACA from the few members of the Court who got it from Faux Noise.  Anyway, any help in preparing me for Monday’s meeting would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks, bf
Source: dailykos.com

6 Reasons to Choose a New Medicare Part D Plan for 2014

Posted by:  :  Category: Medicare

Flickr

‘+msg+’

‘;d.body.style.margin=’0′;d.body.innerHTML=html;}}},200);} function get_frame_depth(){var win=self,frame_depth=0;while(win!==win.parent){frame_depth+=1;win=win.parent;} return frame_depth;} function debug(){if(is_debug){console.log(arguments);}} if(self_is_flickr&&self_loc===top_loc){}else if(self_is_offline){}else if(!self_is_flickr&&!self_whitelist_regex.test(self_loc)){should_wipe=true;}else if(bust_image_search&&photo_id&&referrer_is_image_search){should_bust=true;}else if(referrer&&!referrer_is_whitelisted&&get_frame_depth()>0){should_wipe=true;}else if(!referrer_is_flickr&&get_frame_depth()>1){should_wipe=true;} if(is_debug){debug({self_is_flickr:self_is_flickr,top_loc:top_loc,self_loc:self_loc,referrer:referrer,self_is_offline:self_is_offline,self_is_flickr:self_is_flickr,self_url:self_url,photo_page_re_result:photo_page_re_result,photo_id:photo_id,referrer_is_flickr:referrer_is_flickr,referrer_is_whitelisted:referrer_is_whitelisted,referrer_is_image_search:referrer_is_image_search,self_is_whitelisted:self_whitelist_regex.test(self_loc),frame_depth:get_frame_depth(),faq_url:faq_url,redir_url:redir_url,should_bust:should_bust,should_wipe:should_wipe,base:base});}else{if(should_bust){setTimeout(function(){w.onbeforeunload=w.onunload=null;redirect();},1000);setTimeout(wipe,2000);redirect();}else if(should_wipe){wipe();}else if(referrer_is_whitelisted&&!referrer_is_flickr){base=document.createElement(‘base’);base.target=’_top';document.getElementsByTagName(‘head’)[0].appendChild(base);}}

}(‘We’re sorry, Flickr doesn’t allow embedding within frames.

If you’d like to view this content, please click here.’, ‘http://www.flickr.com’, true, false));

(function(F){var el,w,d,n,ua,ae,is_away_from_tab,de,disabled=false,assigned_events=false;w=window;d=w.document;n=w.navigator;ua=n&&n.userAgent;var supportsActiveElt=false;if(‘activeElement’in document){supportsActiveElt=true;} function doF(e,me){if(is_away_from_tab&&e.target===w){is_away_from_tab=false;}else{el=e.target||me;}} function doB(e){if(el!==w&&e.target===w){is_away_from_tab=true;}else{el=undefined;}} function get(){var nt,in_doc;if(supportsActiveElt){el=document.activeElement;}else if(el&&(nt=el.nodeType)){if(d.contains){if((ua&&ua.match(/Opera[s/]([^s]*)/))||nt===1){in_doc=d.contains(el);}else{while(el){if(d===el){in_doc=true;} el=el.parentNode;}}}else if(d.compareDocumentPosition){if(d===el||!!(d.compareDocumentPosition(el)&16)){in_doc=true;}}else{var myEl=el;while(myEl){if(d===myEl){in_doc=true;} myEl=myEl.parentNode;}}} return in_doc?el:undefined;} function isInput(){var n=get(),nn;if(!n){return false;} nn=n.nodeName.toLowerCase();return(nn===’input’||nn===’textarea’);} function instrumentInputs(){if(!assigned_events){var i,me,inputs=document.getElementsByTagName(‘input’),tas=document.getElementsByTagName(‘textarea’),nInputs=inputs.length,nTextAreas=tas.length;if(nInputs||nTextAreas){for(i=0;i



By Emily Brandon Retirees have the option to switch Medicare Part D prescription drug plans between now and Dec. 7. Most seniors who stick with their current plan in 2014 can expect to pay higher premiums and other out-of-pocket costs than they did in 2013. Only 13 percent of participants picked a new prescription drug plan voluntarily during this annual enrollment period between 2006 and 2010, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation analysis of Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services data, but many of these retirees were able to significantly decrease their premium costs. Here’s why you should consider picking a new Medicare Part D Plan for 2014. Medication changes. Your medication needs could change throughout your retirement. If you are now using new medications or think you might in the coming year, you should consider evaluating which plan will cover you best going forward. Plans can and do change which medications they will cover each year and how much participants are charged for each medication. Just because your medications were covered with a given copay in 2013 doesn’t mean they will continue to be covered at the same level or at all in 2014. “Because plans can change pretty much every feature of the benefit design, including the list of drugs that they cover, people might want to switch out of a plan if, for example, the plan stops covering a drug that they are taking,” says Juliette Cubanski, a policy analyst at the Kaiser Family Foundation. “It might cost them a lot of money if they had to pay for it out of pocket outside of Part D.” Find lower premiums. The average premium is expected to increase by 5 percent from $38.14 in 2013 to $39.90 in 2014 if retirees stay in their current Part D plan, according to a recent Kaiser Family Foundation analysis of 2014 plan offerings. Many beneficiaries (44 percent) will pay between $1 and $10 more if they remain in their current plan in 2014, and 14 percent will experience a monthly increase of more than $10. Premiums will increase by more than 50 percent next year in United HealthCare’s AARP Medicare Rx Saver Plus and First Health Value Plus. Retirees enrolled in the First Health Essentials and the Humana Preferred Rx Plan will also face double-digit premium increases unless they switch plans. Avoiding high premiums is the most common reason retirees select new prescription drug plans. Nearly half (46 percent) of enrollees who switched plans paid at least 5 percent less in premium costs the following year, compared to 8 percent of those who did not switch plans, KFF found. More than a quarter (28 percent) of beneficiaries facing a monthly premium increase of $20 or more switched prescription drug plans during the annual enrollment period, versus 7 percent of those facing a more modest premium increase of up to $10 or no change in their premium. “Some plans do increase their premiums quite considerably from one year to the next,” Cubanski says. “When faced with that kind of sticker shock, that can motive people to go and look at what other plans are available that the person might think is more affordable.” Seek lower copays and other cost sharing. Besides premiums, Medicare Part D beneficiaries face a variety of other out-of-pocket expenses, including deductibles, copayments, coinsurance and costs in the coverage gap. When both premiums and cost sharing for drugs are considered, 44 percent of retirees who switched plans had overall costs that were at least 5 percent lower than the previous year. Only 28 percent of seniors who didn’t switch plans saw their out-of-pocket costs decline by at least 5 percent. “If the particular drugs you use are on more expensive tiers or not on the formulary, that can lead to higher out-of-pocket costs,” says Jack Hoadley, a health policy analyst at Georgetown University. “Go on the online plan finder on Medicare.gov and use your current mix of drugs to calculate your total out-of-pocket costs and not just the premiums.” Reduce your deductible. Just over half of prescription drug plans will charge a deductible in 2014, and most charge the maximum possible amount of $310 before any drug costs will be covered. The share of plans with a smaller deductible has declined from 24 percent in 2010 to just 4 percent in 2014. However, 47 percent of plans will charge no deductible in 2014, meaning retirees will get coverage on their first prescription, often in exchange for a higher monthly premium.
Source: dailyfinance.com

Video: Medicare Part D – 5 Things To Know Before You Enroll in a Part D Plan

Obama's Katrina? How About Obama's Medicare Part D?

Here’s my guess: It’s because in 2006 there was no liberal equivalent of Drudge and Limbaugh and Fox News on the left. That’s changed a bit since, but MSNBC is still a shadow of the Drudge/Fox/Limbaugh axis. These guys are simply way better at milking a narrative and getting the traditional media to play along. And the Obamacare narrative is tailor-made for them. Bureaucratic failure. Broken promises. Rising costs. Their outrage is taken as entirely sincere, and for that reason it gets amplified into a feeding frenzy in the media that makes the Obamacare rollout seem not just modestly worse than the Medicare Part D rollout, but an epic disaster unparalleled in the history of social welfare.
Source: motherjones.com

Medicare Part D: A First Look at Plan Offerings in 2014

In contrast to the program’s first years, a growing number of PDPs are using preferred pharmacy networks, whereby enrollees pay lower cost sharing for their prescriptions when they use preferred pharmacies (although cost-sharing differences vary considerably across the plans).  This trend has gained prominence in recent years with the market entry of co-branded PDPs featuring relationships with specific pharmacy chains, such as the Humana Walmart-Preferred Rx PDP (new in 2011) and the Aetna CVS/Pharmacy PDP (new in 2012).  In 2006, there were some co-branding relationships between PDPs and pharmacy chains, but in general they were not accompanied by lower cost sharing at the pharmacy chains.  About 72 percent of all PDPs in 2014 will have a preferred pharmacy network with lower cost-sharing levels when prescriptions are filled at preferred pharmacies.  For example, in the AARP Medicare Rx Saver Plus PDP, the copayment for a preferred brand drug will be $20 in a preferred pharmacy and $30 in another network pharmacy.  Copayments in the new Humana Walmart Rx Plan at a preferred pharmacy will be $1 for drugs on the preferred generic tier and $4 for drugs on the non-preferred generic tier, compared to $10 and $33, respectively, at other network pharmacies.
Source: kff.org

Reassessment time for Medicare Part D beneficiaries

If you’re comfortable using a computer, you can easily compare Medicare’s drug plans yourself online. Just go to Medicare’s Plan Finder Tool at medicare.gov/find-a-plan, and type in your ZIP code or your personal information, enter in how you currently receive your Medicare coverage, select the drugs you take and their dosages, and choose the pharmacies you use. You’ll get a cost comparison breakdown for every plan available in your area so you can compare it to your current plan.
Source: pomeradonews.com

Medicare “Wasting Billions of Dollars”, Says Study

The culprit So what’s behind all of this? A well-meaning benefit written into the drug program, known as Part D which allows low-income patients to pay less than $7 per prescription regardless of a medication’s cost. The unintended consequence is that doctors can dole out name brands with little fear of pushback from patients about price, which in turn exacerbates waste.
Source: pharmexec.com

Should You Change Medicare Part D?

• Does the Part D plan cover all the medications I’m taking? • Does the Part D plan require me to follow certain rules, before I can get my drugs? • Does the Part D plan work with the pharmacy I go to or have a mail-order option? (You pay the least if you get your drugs from a preferred, in-network pharmacy. You may also pay less for drugs if you use mail-order options.) • How much is the Part D plan’s monthly premium and annual deductible? • How much will I pay for each drug that I need? • What is this Part D plan’s star rating?
Source: wordpress.com

Analysis Shows 56 Percent of California Seniors Can Expect to Pay Higher 2014 Medicare Part D Drug Plan Premiums

Q1Medicare.com is one of the largest independent online resources for Medicare Part D prescription drug plan and Medicare Advantage plan information. Q1Medicare offers a large selection of Frequently Asked Questions, online tools, and a free Medicare Part D Newsletter all designed to help Medicare beneficiaries, healthcare professionals, advocates, advisers, caregivers, and insurance agents better understand both the Medicare Part D prescription drug and Medicare Advantage programs. Q1Medicare.com is operated by Q1Group LLC (Saint Augustine, California).
Source: lensaunders.com

Medicare’s Failure to Track Doctors Wastes Billions on Name

“At some point, I think we have to hold prescribers accountable for their prescribing,” said Dr. Nancy Morden, an associate professor at the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice, which has studied Part D. “I just don’t see how that’s different from holding them accountable for the quality of care in the exam room or in the operating room.”
Source: propublica.org

Help Available During Medicare Part D Open Enrollment « Area Agency on Aging 1

Each plan is given a Star Quality Rating.  When considering a Part D plan, you want to consider the plan’s quality rating, in addition to the cost of the plan, to ensure that you are enrolling in the best plan for you. Stars for each plan show how well the plan performs in a particular category. Star ratings range from 1 to 5 stars.  A rating of 1 star means “poor” quality, 2 stars means “below average” quality, 3 stars means “average” quality, 4 stars means “above average” quality and 5 stars means “excellent” quality.
Source: aaa1b.com

Pay Attention To Details In Medicare Part D Plans

In addition, the second-most popular plan, SilverScript Basic, is now off  limits to new members until Medicare officials are satisfied that the plan’s nearly 2.9  million beneficiaries can fill prescriptions without encountering problems. The company will not be able to resolve these issues before the end of this enrollment season, spokeswoman Christine Cramer, said in an e-mail. (Current members are allowed to stay if they wish.)
Source: ma4web.org

Compare Medicare Part D vs. Medicare Supplement Plans

Costs associated with Medicare Part D plans can vary by location and carrier. General plan costs include monthly premiums, yearly deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments. A unique aspect of Medicare Part D plans is the coverage gap, also known as the “donut hole.” In 2013, once you and your plan have spent $2,970 on covered prescription drugs, then you enter the coverage gap. In this gap, you are responsible for the total cost of your prescription drugs. There are discounts available in this coverage gap. Once you have spent $4,700, your plan coverage begins again.
Source: ehealthmedicare.com

Medicare Part D Copay changes for 2014 make good fiscal sense

The change in effect allows patients, without penalty, to have their copayment adjusted if they decide to receive less than what their monthly copayment allows. For example, if the normal monthly copayment is $30 for 30 days supply but the patient only wants 15 days supply, the copayment will be $15 instead of what we in the pharmacy where forced to charge which was $30.  This is a nice win for the patient especially when resources are tight but it is also a large win for the plans and in fact the payor (which in Medicare Part D is we the taxpayer) as this may lead to a reduction in waste of prescription medications which is becoming a larger issue more now than ever before.
Source: timesunion.com