• Legislative Update Week Ending October 10 2014

    Nationwide, the picture is equally bleak, with more than 60 million Americans at risk of losing access to the rural hospitals that serve their families. What's worse – in order to prevent rural hospitals from closing under a Medicare-for-all regime, Medicare would have to increase hospital payments up to 60% higher than current Medicare rates. .Throughout the remainder of the 113th Congress, TSCL will continue to urge Members of Congress to pass the Social Security Fairness Act since we believe strongly that it would go far in ensuring the retirement security of millions of seniors. To aid us in our efforts, we encourage you to contact your elected officials to request their support for S. 896 and H.R. 1795. .Lawmakers Advance Short-Term Funding Measure … Continued

  • Does The Social Security Cola Overpay Seniors Deficit Cutters Say Colas Need A Trim Feed

    This legislation would require the Federal Trade Commission to update its website to include a searchable database of scams targeting seniors. It would have to work with media outlets and law enforcement to distribute the information. The FTC also would be required to send Congress a report with policy recommendations to prevent scams targeting older individuals, especially during national emergencies. .Could you tell me the status of the Social Security agreement with Mexico? There hasn't seemed to be much news about it recently. If we get a new president does that mean the agreement would be dead? .Both bills are now awaiting the signature of President Donald Trump. He is expected to sign them into law in the very near future. The Senior Citizens League is pleased that lawmakers successfully advanced legislation that will protect the American public from "gag clauses" that result in higher out-of-pocket costs at pharmacies. … Continued

In the Senate, Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (IA) has also prioritized this critical issue. His first hearing as chairman was titled "Drug Pricing in AmericA Prescription for Change" and, in his opening statement, he vowed to get to the bottom of the growing problem. Following that hearing in January, Chairman Grassley called upon seven of the most profitable pharmaceutical companies to testify before the committee, saying: "Patients and taxpayers deserve to hear from leaders in the industry about what's behind this unsustainable trend." .This sounds similar to the current Medicare Advantage system except for one big difference — the Health and Human Services secretary would be given authority to set beneficiary cost-sharing "based on evidence of the value of services." Under this criterion, who do you think would be more likely to get the best coverage for expensive services like CT scans that can cost ,000 — an 84-year-old, or a 43-year-old mother with two children? Finally, the recommendation would require insurers to pay a surcharge on the Medigap policies that they offer to beneficiaries. This proposal is not new. .On Tuesday, the Senate Finance Committee held a hearing to delve into the topic of rising healthcare costs. Echoing the hopes of his colleagues on the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (UT) said in his opening statement, "I want to find a bipartisan path forward." . What does it mean when a Member of Congress says he favors changing Medicare from a "fee-for-service" model to one where the patients would pay based on health outcomes? Is he suggesting that Medicare should stop covering treatments if the patient can't or doesn't improve? .Depending on your income, you may qualify for Medicare Extra Help, which can cover most or all of your prescription drug premium and out-of-pocket costs. Your SHIP counselor may also know of special programs in your state. .Key Bill Gains Cosponsor .In a normal year the two-week period around Christmas and New Years Day is a slow news period. But, as with so much else, that was not true this year. .Be wary of the information from this acquaintance, and any claim that she has obtained the ,000. While it may be a simple misunderstanding, be careful of scams. Make sure your mom knows she should never give out her Social Security number over the phone to anyone or to anyone you meet who says that it's required in order to receive the ,000 settlement. .The age at which you stop working.