Congressional Inaction Could Mean Lower Benefits For People Born In 1960
TSCL Endorses New COLA Bill .Medicare is structured to pay more to providers based on how sick people are — not on making them well. Yet about one-half of all adults have at least one chronic condition, which is not only the most costly type of health problem to treat over time, but also the most preventable. .According to the results, TSCL's members and supporters would prefer to see a more permanent solution. Forty-eight percent of respondents said the DI program should tighten its eligibility requirements and conduct more continuing disability reviews to reduce fraud, and 51 percent said high wage earners should be required to pay Social Security taxes on all of their incomes. … Continued
Q November 2017 2
Just as today, in 1977 the federal budget was in deficit, and Social Security was facing a funding crisis. The new benefit formula changes first affected seniors who turned 62 in 1979 just two years later. Seniors born from 1917 through 1926 wound up receiving lower benefits than other retirees with almost identical work and earnings records. Although reductions of about 10 percent for average earners were expected at the time of the changes, Notch babies were often affected by disparities of 20 percent or more, because a phase-in benefit formula failed. .Confirmation Process Begins for Burwell .The first new rule affects Medicare Part B drug costs, which are typically infused or injected drugs used mainly in the treatment of cancer. The intent is to cap the cost of those drugs at the lowest price that drug manufacturers receive in other countries and to pay doctors a flat fee for each dose of a drug, instead of a percentage of each drug's cost. … Continued
Initial Coverage Period: During this stage of coverage you pay a co-pay or co-insurance of 25% of the cost of covered drugs, and the plan pays 75%, up to a total of ,005 (beneficiary) and ,015 (plan). This includes any applicable deductible. Your plan's full retail drug cost, not your co-pay, is what counts toward entering the coverage gap. Your co-pays or True Out-of-Pocket costs (TrOOP) count toward exiting the coverage gap and qualifying for catastrophic coverage. .I've been out of work since late March. The company that I was working for is in the process of declaring bankruptcy, and I haven't found a new job yet. I turn 64 in two months, but if I start Social Security. Ask the Advisor: August 2020 Is Taking a Loan Against Your Social Security Benefits a Reasonable Option When You are Out of Work? .This week, lawmakers remained in their home states and districts for the two-week spring recess. .This week, Members of Congress returned to Washington following a two-week recess and quickly began working on legislation to prevent a government shutdown. In addition, House Republicans revived the American Health Care Act (AHCA), which would repeal and replace most of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) if adopted. Finally, one House Subcommittee met to discuss fraud prevention within the Social Security Disability Insurance (DI) program. .It eliminated the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB). This fifteen-member board of unelected officials was created by the Affordable Care Act in 2010 to keep Medicare spending down when it exceeded a certain level. While that level was never surpassed and no members were ever appointed to the board, TSCL felt that it could have threatened access to quality medical care for Medicare beneficiaries since it had the power to cut payments to doctors and limit networks of providers. TSCL has advocated for bipartisan legislation for years that would have eliminated the IPAB, and we were pleased that the Bipartisan Budget Act did just that. .Every other developed country has evolved schemes to set or negotiate prices, while balancing cost, efficacy and social good. The United States instead has let business calculations drive drug price tags, forcing us to accept and absorb ever higher costs. That feels particularly galling for treatments and vaccines against COVID-19, whose development and production is being subsidized and incentivized with billions in federal investment. .Instead, I am a strong supporter of the Consumer Price Index for Elderly Consumers Act of 201This legislation would change the way the Social Security Administration calculates the Cost of Living Adjustments (COLA) by switching from a CPI based on urban wage earners to a formula that would better reflect the spending of seniors. Unlike younger Americans, seniors spend a disproportionate amount of their income on medical expenses and it is crucial that we raise the Cost of Living Adjustment to keep up with the rising cost of medical expenses. .Just how bad is it? We were stunned to learn just how big the disparity in drug prices can be. Recently I compared the highest and lowest prices of the top ten most-prescribed drugs in the U.S. using the Medicare drug plan finder. In my area, a monthly supply of diabetes drug Lantus Solostar for example, ranges from a high of 2.00 from the mail order pharmacy of First Health Part D Value Plus plan to a low of .75 from the network retail pharmacies for SilverScript Choice. In fact, the cost difference between the highest and lowest-cost plans for the ten drugs compared averaged 3 per month! .Watch your mail for information from your current Medicare supplemental or Medicare Advantage, and drug plan insurers. Your insurers will send you notification of changes in coverage, such as premiums, deductible, and co-insurance or co-payment costs for 200Carefully review these documents and compare them with your costs in 200File these documents where you can easily refer to them because you will need to use them for comparison when comparing other insurance options.