Legislative Update For Week Ending May 25 2012
Even if your income will be slightly higher in 2018 you should apply, because the income and resource limits are adjusted annually and will likely be somewhat higher next year. "Resources " refer to money in checking and savings accounts, stocks, bonds, mutual funds and Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs). Don't rule out applying just because you own your own home. Your home, car, household items, burial plot up to ,500 for burial expenses per person, and life insurance policies ARE NOT counted as resources. .Last week the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention relaxed its warning for cruise travel for the first time since several outbreaks on ships brought the industry to a halt last year. .TSCL Goal of new Drug Pricing Legislation Left out of new House Bill … Continued
The Seniors Citizens League Weekly Update
Even though I'm not on Medicare yet, these new quality initiatives will, one way or another will affect most patients, even those like me who are still under the age of 65 as doctors reorganize. I felt dumped. .This week, four new cosponsors signed on to Rep. Schwartz's (PA-13) Medicare Physician Payment Innovation Act (H.R. 5707), bringing the total up to eighteen. The new cosponsors are: Reps. Ed Perlmutter (CO-7), Gerald Connolly (VA-11), Mazie Hirono (HI-2), and Paul Tonko (NY-21). .This Part B premium cost - shifting includes shifting those higher costs to state Medicaid budgets that pay the Part B premiums for low-income Medicare beneficiaries — which account for about 19 percent of all Medicare recipients. If this would occur in 2021, this would add yet another fiscal shock to state budgets that are already strained beyond anticipated budgets due to the coronavirus pandemic. … Continued
"UnitedHealth Culls Doctors from Medicare Advantage Plans," Melinda Beck, Wall Street Journal, November 16, 2013. .Third, one new cosponsor, Representative Jamie Raskin (MD-8), signed on to the bipartisan Fair COLA for Seniors Act (H.R. 1553), bringing the total up to twenty-seven. If adopted, this bill would better protect the purchasing power of Social Security benefits by adopting a more adequate Social Security cost-of-living adjustment (COLA). Under current law, COLAs underestimate the inflation seniors experience because they are based on the way young, working Americans spend their money. As a result, Social Security benefits have lost 33 percent of their purchasing power since 2000 according to our research. .In October, the Social Security Administration announced that benefits will increase by 2.8 percent in January 2019, but approximately 2 million seniors with the lowest Social Security benefits will not see any net increase in their monthly checks after Medicare Part B premiums are automatically deducted. It will be the fourth year in a row that this group will not see a boost in net benefits due to Part B premiums, which are rising several times faster than Social Security COLAs. .Analysts say that deeper Medicare cuts may be back on the table by the end of the year. One of the most controversial proposals would convert Medicare into a system called "premium support." Under the proposal, the government would allocate a fixed amount of money for Medicare beneficiaries' premiums; and people would then purchase coverage from private health plans that would provide all their care. .Last week the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released a report that revealed Medicare outpatient plans are three times more expensive for the same drugs as those covered by Medicaid. .Sen. Tom Harkin (IA) introduced S. 567 on March 14, 201It has since been referred to the Committee on Finance. .(Washington, DC) – The percentage of retired households that expect to pay tax on their Social Security benefits has experienced a rare decline this tax season, but that appears to be due to a much higher level of uncertainty than usual ahead of this tax season according to a new survey by The Senior Citizens League (TSCL). "This could potentially mean lower than expected tax revenues for the Social Security and Medicare Trust Funds," says Mary Johnson, a Social Security and Medicare policy analyst for The Senior Citizens League .Be suspicious of products that claim to treat a wide range of diseases. .But here's the real kicker. A statute of limitation loophole is hamstringing Medicare from recovering overpayments. Federal law allows a Medicare claims contractor to reopen a payment determination for "good cause" at any time within 4 years of the date the original payment determination was made. But another provision of law bars the recovery of overpayments from providers that are "without fault." And the law states that a provider is deemed to be without fault 3 years after the year in which the original payment was made unless there is "evidence to the contrary."