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Low-income Medicare Beneficiaries Face Bigger Cost Burdens

May 28th, 2017

  Medicare is the federally funded insurance program for people 65 older as well as people who are disabled. It covers approximately 80% of medical costs for its beneficiaries. That other 20% can be quite a burden for someone who has large medical bills, or anyone with a very low income. According to a recent study, around 15 million elderly and disabled Medicare beneficiaries spend 20% or more of their household income in premiums and out-of-pocket costs. It is the low-income Medicare | Continue reading this entry »

Can Trump Deliver on His Promise to Lower Drug Costs?

April 28th, 2017

With the ever-skyrocketing prices of prescription drugs, President Donald Trump has vowed to negotiate lower prices. While it is admirable that President Trump has expressed determination to help every day citizens relieve some of the financial burden of runaway prescription costs, he faces many challenges on an already uphill battle. President Trump has been very vocal about opposing the rising prices of prescription drugs. Early on he promised to negotiate with pharmaceutical companies to | Continue reading this entry »

How to Keep Your Healthcare Costs Down

March 27th, 2017

According to Fidelity Investments, retired couples over the age of 65 will pay approximately $240,000 dollars out-of-pocket for healthcare. To make matters worse, this staggering amount of money does not cover the typical long-term-care expenses that many retirees in the United States face. Although this financial statistic is rather daunting, there are ways to lower this substantial amount into a manageable figure. The best way to do this is to confirm that your health plan will provide the | Continue reading this entry »

Effect of an ACA Repeal on Medicare Advantage Plans

February 27th, 2017

aca repeal Do you have a Medicare Advantage plan, or are considering switching to one from original Medicare during the next Annual Election Period? If you thought that you wouldn’t be affected by what’s going on with the Trump administration and Obamacare, think again. But while many Americans are nervous, wondering what the “repeal and replace” of the Affordable Care Act will mean to them and their healthcare coverage, things will likely get better for Medicare Advantage plan holders. Medicare | Continue reading this entry »

Fighting Ageism in Healthcare

January 25th, 2017

Maybe you never thought about it before, but as an older American, you could be a victim of discrimination based on your age. How does age discrimination fit into healthcare? It can happen in a couple of different ways. Sometimes physicians chalk up symptoms to normal aging, and ignore them. Oftentimes these symptoms are indications of true problems, that can be improved through treatment. Other times they view pain, depression, and anxiety as unavoidable in older people, and they may unconsciously | Continue reading this entry »

Is Privatizing Medicare a Possibility Under a Trump Presidency?

December 28th, 2016

Candidate Donald Trump didn’t say much about Medicare, and President Elect Donald Trump hasn’t said much, either. But the Republican Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, has plenty to say about it, and what he’s said has got a lot of older Americans worried. Paul Ryan has made it known for quite some time that he would like to privatize Medicare, and now that the Senate and Congress are dominated by Republicans, and there’s a Republican president, he might just get his way. But what will this | Continue reading this entry »

The AEP Is Ending Shortly!

November 21st, 2016

December 7 - that’s the official end of the 2017 Annual Election Period (AEP) for Medicare Advantage plans and Part D prescription drug plans - is just around the corner. Do you need to take care of any business associated with your Medicare coverage? Here’s a quick review: If you have original Medicare, along with a Medicare supplement (Medigap) plan, and everything is going well for you, you don’t need to do a thing. If you’re not happy with original Medicare, and you’re thinking | Continue reading this entry »

How to Choose the Best Medicare Advantage Plan

October 27th, 2016

Every year, Medicare recipients are allowed to switch from good old Medicare to a different coverage model during the Annual Election Period (AEP), which runs from October 15 through December 7. Medicare Advantage plans aren’t right for everyone, but they can save some folks substantial money. How do you go about choosing the best Medicare Advantage plan? Consider your doctors Chances are you’ve found doctors you like, and who know you and know your particular medical history, and you’d | Continue reading this entry »

A Timeline Reference for the 2017 Annual Election Period

September 18th, 2016

The Annual Election Period (AEP) for Medicare Advantage and Part D prescription drug plans is right around the corner. This year it starts on October 7 and runs until December 15. But what exactly does it mean to you? What happens every year during this period? For many people the AEP doesn’t mean much. But if you’re thinking about changing your Medicare coverage situation, or even just evaluating your options, be aware, and be prepared. So just what can you do during the AEP? You can | Continue reading this entry »

Get 50% Off the Price of the Only Medicare Resource You’ll Ever Need

August 22nd, 2016

The Medicare Playbook is here to make your transition to Medicare a no-brainer! Way back in the day when I first started marketing Medigap plans, I used to turn to for help in understanding the myriad of rules and regulations surrounding healthcare laws for older Americans. 9 times out of 10 I abandoned my search, feeling frustrated and more confused than when I started. I wondered where Americans were going for credible, reliable, and easy-to-understand information about how their | Continue reading this entry »

Medicare Under Obama: More Changes Than You Think

July 18th, 2016

Much has been made of the changes in the health insurance landscape brought about by the Affordable Care Act (ACA, also known as Obamacare) during President Obama’s administration. It seems that you can’t turn on the news or open the paper these days without getting at least one story about health insurance, the federal insurance exchange, or another health insurance company pulling out of the individual health insurance market due to the high costs associated with ACA-compliant plans. But | Continue reading this entry »

6 Steps To Healthier Feet

June 19th, 2016

Taking care of your feet is the foundation of good overall health Maybe you don’t think much about your feet, but foot health takes on more and more importance as we age. And this isn’t just about getting a stylish pedicure, either. Proper foot care means trimming nails correctly, checking for warts or growths, looking out for toenail fungus, and carefully managing ingrown toenails. Most of us can’t take adequate care of our feet - either because we can’t reach them anymore, or we don’t | Continue reading this entry »

Memorize These 5 Rules In Medicare

May 17th, 2016

Everyone wants the secret code to making life easier. People talk about “hacks,” or shortcuts to doing things better, or more efficiently. Medicare is no different, and as a complicated behemoth of government regulations, it can be daunting to navigate, especially if you’ll soon be turning 65 and relying on it to pay your medical bills. But there is help - here are 5 rules in Medicare that you need to know by heart in order to fully understand how it works. Know when to apply for Medicare. | Continue reading this entry »

Beware the Federal Government’s Experimentation with Your Prescription Drug Charges

April 14th, 2016

Last month President Obama and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS - the folks who make Medicare policy) announced a five-year initiative that would test new models for paying for prescription drugs for Medicare recipients. The plans propose to specifically test changes to how Part B pays for drugs. Hold on a minute (you might be saying) - Part B doesn’t pay for prescription drugs, does it? Well, it does for “certain” drugs, if they are administered in a doctor’s office on | Continue reading this entry »

9 Things That May Have You Paying More for Prescription Drugs in 2016

March 16th, 2016

Some of our clients have been asking “How in the world can I now be paying more for my prescription drugs in 2016, when I didn’t change my Part D coverage?” I certainly don’t blame people for being frustrated ­ if you’re living on a fixed income, even a small change in what you have to spend for the drugs you depend on can have a big impact. There can be a number of things that have changed in your coverage, resulting in increases in what you pay. Here’s a list of possible causes: The | Continue reading this entry »

Medicare Advantage Plans Vs. Medigap Plans

February 18th, 2016

Know the difference! It goes without saying that turning 65 is a pretty big milestone for most people. The main reason is that most of us will become eligible for retirement at that age. We also qualify to be covered under the federal government’s health plan for older Americans, Medicare. But it’s not as simple as it sounds. Having Medicare alone results in quite a bit of out­of­pocket spending on your part, averaging around $6000 per year in a recent survey of older Americans relying | Continue reading this entry »

3 Important Medicare Changes You Should Know About!

January 28th, 2016

2016 brings with it some important Medicare changes.. It’s important for you to understand those changes, and know the impact they’ll have on your benefits. Some people will be paying higher premiums for their Part B coverage. The “hold­harmless” provision has been activated this year because there’s no Social Security Cost of Living Increase (COLA). Most Medicare recipients won’t see an increase in their premium because of this; however those who don’t have their Part B premiums | Continue reading this entry »

Will Your Doctor Keep Accepting Medicare in 2016?

December 29th, 2015

A change to the way doctors are paid may result in fewer choices for Medicare recipients Although a lot of people don’t know it, the federal government has been supplementing the income of primary care doctors who accept Medicare since 2011 to the tune of $664 million per year. The reason? The program, which is open to family practitioners, internal medicine specialists, geriatric specialists, nurse practitioners, and physician’s assistants, was only designed to be a short-term solution to resolving | Continue reading this entry »

“Hold-Harmless” Provision Turns Out to Be Not So Harmless

November 25th, 2015

Substantial increase in Part B premiums possible for some Medicare recipients in 2016 Under an obscure provision of Medicare-related law, as many as 14% of recipients will pay more - some substantially more - for their Part B premiums in 2016. The increase is the result of something known as the Hold Harmless provision. It is meant to protect Medicare recipients who also receive Social Security benefits from increases in Part B premiums, during years when there will be no Cost of Living Allowance | Continue reading this entry »

Medicare’s Annual Election Period is in full swing!

October 19th, 2015

I’ve been in the business of helping people get health coverage for many years. I well remember the days before Obamacare, when people could shop for health insurance year-round. But things have been different since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (or the ACA, as “Obamacare”) in 2010. One of the biggest changes to the insurance landscape was restricting the times of year that people can change or sign up for certain types of health coverage. How does this affect you, as a person | Continue reading this entry »

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