cost

Expensive New Hepatitis C Drug Raises Alarms

Posted on 05/28/2014 by |Public Policy | Comments

Public Policy InstituteThis piece originally ran in the Huffington Post and was written by Leigh Purvis and Debra B. Whitman. Hepatitis C is a serious liver disease that results from infection with the hepatitis C virus. It currently affects more than 3 million Americans, many of whom do not know that they are infected. Left untreated, it can lead to liver damage, cirrhosis, liver failure or liver cancer. Until recently, hepatitis C treatments only cured about half of patients and often had undesirable …

$2 Billion Tab for Medicare’s Overused Services

Posted on 05/19/2014 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Bulletin Today | Personal HealthMedical services that provide little or no health benefit to older Americans cost Medicare at least $1.9 billion a year, according to a landmark new study. Researchers at Harvard University’s department of health care policy found that at least 25 percent of the more than 1.3 million Medicare beneficiaries had one or more of 26 tests and procedures that have been shown to provide scant medical value. The study is thought to be the first to measure wasteful spending by …

Defaults Rise in Parent PLUS Loans

Posted on 04/11/2014 by |Money and Work | Comments

Bulletin Today | Money & SavingsParents who’ve taken out federal student loans to help pay for their children’s college education are increasingly finding themselves in serious financial trouble. Default rates on Parent PLUS loans have tripled in the last few years, according to federal data released this month. Some 5.1 percent of loans that originated in the 2010 fiscal year were in default three years later, according to U.S. Department of Education data released last week. Default rates were highest, at 13.3 percent, for Parent …

Stoke the Flames With These Fireplace Tips

Posted on 11/4/2013 by |The Ultimate Cheapskate | Comments

Money & SavingsIn many parts of the country, it’s time to stoke up the fireplace or woodstove for a little extra heat. Here are some hearth-warming tips to keep in mind: Heating With Wood Can Save: According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, burning one cord of wood generates the heat equivalent of  200 gallons to 250 gallons of fuel oil. Based on our most recent fuel oil bills and the cost of a cord of wood from a firewood supplier, that much …

AARP: Don’t Shrink Social Security’s Cost-of-Living Adjustment

Posted on 10/30/2013 by |AARP Executive Vice President | Comments

PoliticsThe annual Social Security cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) is critically important to the financial security of the nearly 58 million Americans receiving benefits. By providing protection against inflation, the COLA helps beneficiaries of all ages maintain their standard of living, keeping many from falling into poverty. The COLA announced today is vital to millions, but at an average of just $19 per month, it will quickly be consumed by the rising costs of basic needs such as food, utilities and health …

The Costs of Not Expanding Medicaid

Posted on 07/24/2013 by |In Other News . . . | Comments

Bulletin Today | PoliticsI generally don’t like to tell people that I majored in economics in college, because — the painful truth be told — there’s not a lot that I actually remember about “the dismal science.” One of the few things I do remember, however, is the concept of “opportunity cost.” That’s the name economists give to the cost of not doing something. Which brings us, in today’s lesson, to Medicaid, the government-sponsored health insurance program for certain groups of low-income Americans. …