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You Need To Prepare For The Medicare Increase

doctor explaining benefits to senior patient

Going up! The Medicare increase is going into effect January 1st. As a Medicare beneficiary, it’s important to keep up with annual changes in costs and coverages. Be sure to stay up to date with the latest policies to understand how much premiums are going up.

Medicare Increase 2019

Medicare Part B Premium Increase

Medicare Part B covers health services, preventative care services, and supplies such as Durable Medical Equipment (DME) supplies, home healthcare services, physician services, outpatient services, flu shots, diabetes screenings and more.

The monthly rate is only increasing by $1.50, so expect your bill to go from $134 to $135.50. Because about 2 million Medicare beneficiaries will pay less than the monthly Medicare Part B premium the increase is limited and can not be greater than the increase of social security benefits.

Medicare Part B premiums are based on your income and the income-related monthly adjustment amount (IRMAA) may have bumped members with high income into high premium brackets. As a result, another higher premium bracket was added for 2019. Those making $500k or more and $750k for married couples will pay a monthly premium of $460.50.

Medicare Part A Premium Increase

Medicare Part A covers inpatient hospital care, hospice, surgery, home health care, skilled nursing care.

Only 1% of Medicare beneficiaries pay for a premium for part A. You may see pay a Part A Medicare premium increase if you have less than 40 quarters of employment (one quarter is 3 months of the working calendar year) or if you’re disabled and have voluntarily enrolled.

Those with at least 30 quarters of work or who have married someone with at least 30 quarters of coverage may buy into Part A with a reduced monthly rate which will increase by $8 in 2019, total $240.

Medicare Part B Deductible Increase

The Medicare Part B deductible will increase from $183 to $185 in 2019. This includes Medicaid, employer-sponsored plans, and Medicare Supplement Plan C and F as well as the 20% coinsurance for many covered services.

Medicare Supplement Plans that cover part B can be purchased through 2019. After that Part B deductible plans will not be available for purchase due to the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) to balance the budget.

Medicare Part A Deductible Increase

The Medicare Plan A Deductible is increasing by $24 in 2019, from $1,340 to $1,364. If Medicare is your traditional coverage, you’ll be expected to pay this once admitted to the hospital.

In 2019, the Part A inpatient coverage will cover a share of the beneficiaries’ cost for the first 60 days of hospital care in a benefit period with a coinsurance amount of about $348 per day the 61st – 90th day of hospitalization. This is a $6 increase per day from 2018. The amount for lifetime reserve days increased from $670 to $682 per day.

In skilled nursing facilities, Medicare beneficiaries will see daily coinsurance for days 21 through 100 in extended care services increase from $167.50 to $170.50 in 2019.

Medicare Enrollment Reminder

Do you need to change your Medicare coverage? Well, you’re running out of time. Open enrollment opened on October 15th and will close on December 7, 2018. The changes you make will go into effect January 1, 2018.

Remember the open enrollment period is for people who are already enrolled in Medicare. If you need to enroll, do so during your initial enrollment period which is 3 months before your 65th birthday, the month of your 65th birthday, or the 3 months after.

Reviewing your annual change notice and being aware of increasing costs can help you make an informed decision about managing your plan.

If you have any questions visit Medicare.gov.

Information provided on the Aeroflow Health blog is not intended as a substitute to medical advice or care. Aeroflow Health recommends consulting a doctor if you are experiencing medical issues or concerns.

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