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Using data from a national longitudinal survey, Mt. Sinai professor Amy Kelley looked at out-of-pocket medical costs near the end of life and uncovered some sobering statistics. A whopping 43 percent of Medicare patients end up spending more than the total value of their assets, excluding real estate, on end-of-life care, while 25 percent spent all their assets including including any money from home or property.
Oof. The latest estimate of an average American couple’s retirement health care costs is $240,000. The calculation, from Fidelity Investments, is based on a 65-year-old couple with Medicare coverage, and factors in things like premiums, co-pays, deductibles and out-of-pocket prescription drug costs. It doesn’t factor in things like long-term care, dental services, over-the-counter meds or hearing aids.
It was a simple question: How much do hospitals charge to remove an appendix? The answer stunned researchers at the University of California, San Francisco. As the Associated Press reported, the researchers found that California hospitals charge anywhere from the price of a refrigerator to the cost of a house. For this common procedure, patient bills varied from as little as $1,529 to as much as $182,955, with an average of $33,000 — and experts worry that the situation isn’t …
Research Overseas Healthcare Options Easily: Traveling4Health & Retirement (THR) has just launched an interactive online map of overseas medical resources, including places for “medical tourism“””traveling to foreign countries specifically for lower-cost medical care. With the ever-increasing costs of U.S. healthcare, it’s a practice more Americans have been embracing in recent years.
A recent survey, conducted by Bankers Life and Casualty Company, found 82 percent of middle-income Americans on Medicare say they’re ‘extremely’ or ‘very’ satisfied with access t0 and quality of health care. Only 2 percent said they were ‘not satisfied’ with Medicare access and quality.
What Goes Up … Must Go Up? Health insurance premiums may be slated to rise less next year than they have in over a decade, but perhaps that’s because 2011 saw unprecedented surges. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, annual premiums for some employer-sponsored family health insurance policies surpassed $15,000 this year, a climb of 9 percent over 2010; premiums for individual coverage rose 8 percent. Between 2009-2010, premiums for families and individuals rose just 5 and 3 percent, respectively. Because employers split …