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Part b
Old 01-08-2010, 03:24 PM   #1
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: South Texas~29N/98W
Posts: 6,282
Part b

Received this from MOAA today. Hope that the increase does not affect you.

Medicare Part B Inequity Strikes
The Senate failed to act in time on legislation to prevent all Medicare beneficiaries from seeing a Part B premium increases this year.
As a result nearly 25% of Medicare beneficiaries are now subject to increased Part B premiums (and a net reduction in their Social Security checks) this month.
In years like 2010 when there’s no Social Security COLA, current law protects most Medicare beneficiaries from premium increases. This "hold harmless" provision covers nearly 75% of Medicare beneficiaries who will maintain their 2009 Part B premiums of $96.40 per month.
The other 25% of Medicare-eligibles will see a significant increase in their premiums. Those affected by the Part B premium increase include:
  • new eligibles who will turn 65 in 2010
  • Medicare beneficiaries who don't yet receive Social Security benefits and pay Part B premiums directly to Medicare
  • some Medicare-eligibles who also qualify for Medicaid
  • beneficiaries with 2008 adjusted gross incomes greater than $85,000 ($170,000 for married couples)
Even though overall inflation was negative for FY2009, medical costs actually rose, and that's what drives Part B premiums, which are supposed to reflect 25% of Medicare's cost of delivering care. But when the premium for 75% of beneficiaries is frozen, the cost increase must be borne entirely by the remaining 25% (about 11 million beneficiaries).
So the basic Part B premium for beneficiaries not protected by the "hold harmless" provision will be $110.50 a month in 2010 - a $14.10 increase. Premiums for higher-income people with a modified adjusted gross income of more than $85,000 (for those filing an individual return) or $170,000 (married couples filing jointly) will rise even more -- to $154.70 - $353.60 a month, depending on the size of their incomes
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