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Medicare is a health insurance program of the United States government that subsidizes healthcare services. The plan provides coverage for individuals 65 or older, those younger than 65 who meet certain eligibility criteria, and those with certain diseases.
Medicare comprises several plans, each providing coverage for a particular aspect of medical care; however, some require the insured to pay a premium. Medicare gives consumers more options in terms of costs and coverage, but it also makes it harder for people to sign up for the program.
Medicare Changes in 2022
According to a report by the Kaiser Family Foundation, the typical Medicare beneficiary will have access to 39 different Medicare Advantage plan options in 2022, more than in recent years. The expected changes would consist of the following:
Improved Alzheimer’s Drug Coverage
According to the Alzheimer’s Association in the U.S., the disease affects approximately 6 million Americans. It has grown to be a serious issue for the medical industry because it is among the most widespread illnesses that affect people of all ages.
An effort was made to control and help those afflicted by it by the government. For instance, CMS announced that they plan to submit a proposal for a monoclonal antibody drug that could help fight Alzheimer’s disease.
The government is still testing the drug and needs more real-world data before it can be sold to the public. The Food and Drug Administration Authority has approved the use of AduhelmTM as the only treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.
Improved TeleHealth Services
Medicare has over 44 million beneficiaries, making it one of the largest health-related programs in the U.S. The program is designed to cover a large population. It offers some of the most comprehensive treatment plans currently available to patients. As a result, many Medicare beneficiaries have limited mobility or are in poor health, making it difficult for them to access hospital facilities in their area. Sometimes the journey is so strenuous and exhausting that some people prefer to stay home and postpone their doctor’s appointments. It was a significant issue for people during the recent covid outbreak.
Fortunately, Medicare has addressed this issue by providing more telehealth care services to its patients. Telehealth services enable medical professionals to treat COVID-19-related or other medical conditions from the comfort of their own homes, offices, or other locations.
Reduction of Insulin Cost
The price of insulin has historically been a significant burden on the finances of older adults. Many older Americans rely on insulin, which puts their lives at risk if they don’t have it. According to statistics, one in every five Medicare beneficiaries has diabetes. Unfortunately, many people continue to lack adequate access to insulin.
The Part D Senior Savings Model was introduced by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in 2021, marking the beginning of the process by which the Medicare program would begin to address this concern for senior citizens. This model limits insulin costs to $35 per month.
Since its expansion in 2022, the Medicare Part D Senior Savings Model now assists more people enrolled in the Medicare program. The program has expanded to include all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico so that everyone can get the same insulin doses at the same price.
Medicare Advantage Changes
Another popular option for Medicare beneficiaries in the U.S. is the Medicare Advantage plan (Part C). People must be aware that there may be numerous changes soon regarding this plan.
The Medicare Advantage Plan (Part C) price has dropped from $21.22 to $19, making it a viable option in 2022. Coupled with the monthly premium for Part B, beneficiaries are responsible for paying an additional premium because of the benefits it provides to users and because the program benefits patients in various ways. The following are some of the most popular advantages of signing up for the Medicare Advantage Plan:
· Amplification devices for the deaf
· Availability of gyms and exercise facilities
· Assistance during an emergency
These plans are easily accessible to people who have a plan subscription. In 2022, experts estimate that the number of people enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans will rise to 29.5 million. People with chronic conditions may also qualify for a 19% to 25% reduction in the monthly premium for their Medicare Advantage plans.
How Do I Sign Up for Medicare?
Once you are eligible for Social Security benefits at age 65, you will be automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A, which covers hospital costs, and Medicare Part B, which covers doctor visits. You are automatically enrolled in these programs without taking any additional steps. On the other hand, you will be required to sign up for additional Medicare-related services. You must enroll in Medicare Part D to receive coverage for prescription drugs. You can apply for this through the Social Security Administration’s website, even if you do not currently receive benefits from Social Security. This should be done within seven months, around your 65th birthday. This window includes the three months preceding your 65th birthday, your birthday month, and the three months following your birthday month.
To qualify for Medicare Supplement Insurance, also known as Medigap, you must enroll in Medicare yourself. This enrollment period begins the month after you reach the age of 65 and are enrolled in Medicare Part B. If you sign up during that period, the private insurers offering Medigap plans are required to accept you.
It’s possible to switch Medicare plans at any time during the year if you miss the initial open enrollment period or decide to enroll later.
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> Financial Services consultant since 1984
> FERS independent advocate and an affiliate of Public Sector Retirement Educators (PSRE), a Federal Contractor and Registered Vendors to the
> Affiliate of TSP Withdrawal Consultants
> His goal is to guide individuals into retirement with safe, and predictable choices for stability using forward thinking ideas and concepts.