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Old 01-14-2010, 08:04 AM   #85
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Ron- Very interesting. I'm going to be making these coverage decisions in 6 months, so I'm also awaiting clarification on how you get your premium back. Please keep us posted
Me too
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Old 01-23-2010, 09:45 AM   #86
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Good news $$



I just received a check for $96.40 from Uncle Sam this week for my part B medicare refund.

I'm still baffled by the refund and don't know why I didn't do it sooner.

Ron
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Old 01-23-2010, 12:37 PM   #87
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Scheduled MEDICARE and TRICARE payments to doctors are due a 21% cut for 2010. This is a statutory cut from prior legislation to reduce costs.
Problem began 4 years ago, initially it was a 5% payment cut to cost $48 billion over 10 years. Each year, Congress has voted not to cut doctors salaries for that year. The legislated cuts have compounded, so this year it is at a 21% cut, and will cost $200 billion.
IF it is put off again, next year, it will cut salaries by 26% or cost Medicare $250 billion...The likely outcome is large numbers of doctors will not see Medicare (elderly) or Tricare (military) beneficiaries..
The House voted this year to repeal the legislation but the Senate ducked it.
This is not part of the proposed Health care plans or the other $500 billion to be cut from Medicare...( a broad statement when no one knows what that plan will be, or not)
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Old 01-23-2010, 01:10 PM   #88
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In our area, Doctors are going to stop seeing Medicare folks like us I have heard. Not exactly sure what we are going to do. The "Dr. Fix" of about $265 billion has made it to both houses of congress, but not passed. Not sure what the recent failure of congress to pass the new medicare bill. At least the half a trillion dollar medicare cut won't be taking place.
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Old 01-24-2010, 07:22 AM   #89
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Ron&Dee How does the policy work that you get back your 97.00? Are you then turning around and using it for the policy you bought? If that 97.00 is free to use as you see fit, I might want to do this too. I have both A & B of course, and an advantage plan. Your paying something to get this policy you have. I'm for anything that is good and cheap as possible.
Wayne,

I still have all of my Medicare part A & B and the $96.40 I get back in my SS check is mine to spend as I like

The only thing, since my wife's insurance went up $11.00/ month I will only realize a net monthly gain in my retirement income of $85.40, which is still great

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Old 01-24-2010, 09:37 AM   #90
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Originally Posted by Ron & Dee View Post


I just received a check for $96.40 from Uncle Sam this week for my part B medicare refund.

I'm still baffled by the refund and don't know why I didn't do it sooner.

Ron
You have want is referred to as Part C. Part C is an Advantage Plan. You give up original Medicare Parts A & B and medicare pays for your private Part C Advantage plan. Some Advantage Plans also include RX coverage.

Since you are receiving your Part B SS cost back your Advantage Plan probably has high deductibles and possibly no RX coverage.

One caveat with an Advantage Plan is who accepts it. If you travel extensively you may not have coverage in many areas of the US.

Note: You will not use a Medicare card when you need health care. You will use you private insurance Advantage Plan card.

-Tom
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Old 01-24-2010, 10:31 AM   #91
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Ron & Dee. Congrats on getting back the 96.40. I really am still confused over it. I have both A & B, and supplement policy. My co pay to doctors visits is a simple 15.00 and nothing else. Doctor orders labs I get charged nothing else. Where I am confused I guess, is how much you pay for your new insurance that returns this part b payment. IF it is less than 96.40. and you still get all the services and can select your own doctor and hospital, why are not we all doing this. I would love to save 96.40 but if my policy cost is 130.00 to do this, I haven't gained anything. Can you set me straight on how I win this, and where do I find the papers to do it? Congrats on the return of the money and I hope the services aren't canceled out etc.
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Old 01-24-2010, 10:37 AM   #92
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The Medicare Advantage Plans were scheduled to be cut severely under both the new healthcare plans. This is all up in the air now. I won't be voting for anybody who trys to cut 500 Billion $ from Medicare and tells me there will be no cut is benifits. Might as well be telling me the tooth fairy will be handling it.
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Old 01-24-2010, 11:09 AM   #93
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Originally Posted by Ron & Dee View Post
Wayne,

I still have all of my Medicare part A & B and the $96.40 I get back in my SS check is mine to spend as I like

The only thing, since my wife's insurance went up $11.00/ month I will only realize a net monthly gain in my retirement income of $85.40, which is still great

Ron
$96.40 is deducted from my SS to pay for the HMO that I have added.

My doctor, who is a specialist in two areas of medicine, has gone into something called MD VIP. It costs me $1500.00 per year to stay with him. The advantages to the patient are same day appointments if needed and 40 minute sessions with the doctor instead of the normal 10-15 minutes. The doctor also limits the number of patients to 400. I have been told that this may be the trend across the country because of the cuts in monies, to the doctors, from the government. Of course, I had the option of signing with another doctor and not paying the $1500.00, but in my case I need his care for a chronic condition that most doctors do not have knowledge of. This doctor gives training seminars to other doctors so he is very knowledgeable.
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Old 01-24-2010, 02:28 PM   #94
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Ron & Dee. Congrats on getting back the 96.40. I really am still confused over it. .
Wayne,

I am still confused over getting it back myself

I thought everyone had to make a decision by the 31st of December but I see some insurance companies in Florida are running adds that say you can still change your plan up to March 31st.

I guess the best way to understand a plan would be to have a professional explain it to you.

I can only tell you what I signed up for, and it is better than what I had with just plain Medicare A & B. I do not need any drug coverage or extra hospital plans as the company I retired from takes care of those.

The plan I have has no co-pay for doctor visits, $25.00 co-pay for a specialist. I now have help with eye care, I had none with just plain Medicare. I usually spent $300 to $400 a year for eye exams and glasses, I'll probably spend half that much now.

I don't know what is offered in other states, but the plan I have is only in certain counties in Florida. I was lucky with my primary care physician as he is a member of the plan I have, so I don't have to change.

If I need a doctor's care out of state when I travel I will have a $10.00 co-pay.

My plan


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Old 01-24-2010, 02:53 PM   #95
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In our area, Doctors are going to stop seeing Medicare folks like us I have heard. Not exactly sure what we are going to do. The "Dr. Fix" of about $265 billion has made it to both houses of congress, but not passed. Not sure what the recent failure of congress to pass the new Medicare bill. At least the half a trillion dollar Medicare cut won't be taking place.
Although my heart bleeds for the Average Physician who makes $180,000.00/year. It is not likely that you will see them dumping their Medicare Patients in droves. It's more of a get your attention and insurance mix issue.

About a third of all insured persons are covered by some government plan, Medicare, Medicaid, Tri-Care, Etc. About 60% are covered by private plans. The problem the Docs face is that 60% of their income comes from Government plans. The people who are insured in Private Plans are by and large, healthier and see a Physician less frequently. They also tend to have fewer complex (money making) diseases.

Most large Health Insurance Companies have negoiated rates that are similar to Medicare for themselves as well. The Docs are between a rock and a hard place. Then again, that could go to Canada or England, I here the Docs there love their 40 hour weeks and $80K/year.
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Old 01-24-2010, 07:56 PM   #96
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March 31st deadline...

We in Arizona can switch up to March 31st also. In fact I switched twice already when I found out that a new HMO decided not to contract with my doctor. And like Florida, the eligible plans go by counties.
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Old 01-24-2010, 08:36 PM   #97
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I declined part B... they still gave me a Medicare Hospitalization card. I'll probably never use it... the VA takes very good care of me. For my $300 a month meds, it only costs me $8. I have a primary care physician and a specialist just down the hall.
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Old 02-02-2010, 10:17 AM   #98
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You have want is referred to as Part C. Part C is an Advantage Plan. You give up original Medicare Parts A & B and medicare pays for your private Part C Advantage plan. Some Advantage Plans also include RX coverage.

Since you are receiving your Part B SS cost back your Advantage Plan probably has high deductibles and possibly no RX coverage.

One caveat with an Advantage Plan is who accepts it. If you travel extensively you may not have coverage in many areas of the US.

Note: You will not use a Medicare card when you need health care. You will use you private insurance Advantage Plan card.

-Tom
You don't actually give up your Part A or B, you just don't use it. You use the Advantage plan that you enrolled in. The Part B premium is deducted from your monthly SSI check at the current rate. The Govt actually pays the insurance company a "fee" to cover you and that is why a lot of the programs will have a zero premium. If the Advantage plan has more coverage than what is required by CMS then the insurance company can charge you for the enhancement. Over all, the Advantage plans may be a Great option for you, but you will have to look at each plan and understand how the plan will work for you.

Now the return of the Part B premium is a new one on me as I've not seen any programs in Virginia like that. I am going back thru my study material for the Part C and D cert. to see if I can find something in there on the federal level. I do know that there was NOTHING about the return of Part B premium on my test....If I find out someting I'll post it here.
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