Mcare

One Way Medicare Could Save Big

Posted on 12/11/2013 by |Washington Watch | Comments

Bulletin Today | PoliticsMedicare could save $560 million or more a year simply by allowing some patients who call 911 for an ambulance to be taken somewhere other than a hospital emergency room. What’s more, the study found, private insurers could save twice that amount by following suit. That’s the conclusion of a new study in Health Affairs, which found that more than a third of Medicare patients who called 911 had a “low-acuity diagnosis” that could have been managed outside the hospital emergency …

Will Court Block Insurers from Dropping Doctors?

Posted on 12/6/2013 by |Health | Comments

Bulletin Today | Personal HealthBy Susan Jaffe, Kaiser Health News In a decision that could have national implications, a federal judge in Connecticut temporarily blocked UnitedHealthcare late Thursday from dropping an estimated 2,200 physicians from its Medicare Advantage plan in that state. While the judge’s decision affects only the physicians in Fairfield and Hartford Counties who brought suit, several other medical groups are considering filing similar actions. “This is very good news from Connecticut,” said Dr. Sam L. Unterricht, president of the Medical Society …

Is Your Hospital in Medicare’s Penalty Box?

Posted on 11/15/2013 by |In Other News . . . | Comments

Bulletin Today | Personal HealthIs your hospital being penalized for providing care that falls short of what Medicare thinks it should be? Measures range from nighttime noise to following basic clinical standards of care. If so, your hospital isn’t alone. Some 1,451 hospitals nationwide are being paid a little bit less for each patient they treat in the second year of Medicare’s “quality incentive” program, compared with 1,231 hospitals that will be paid more, according to Kaiser Health News. Here are the hospitals at …

Medicare Premiums Stay Level

Posted on 10/29/2013 by |Washington Watch | Comments

Bulletin Today | Personal HealthMedicare premiums will stay at their current levels next year. While the Affordable Care Act has made sweeping changes in the nation’s health care system, the monthly premium for Medicare Part B, which covers doctor visits and most types of outpatient services, will stay at $104.90 in 2014, with the deductible also unchanged, at $147. >> Sign up for the AARP Health Newsletter. Marilyn Tavenner, the administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), called that “good news …

More Filial Support Cases Ending Up in Court

Posted on 10/28/2013 by |Legal Grounds | Comments

Bulletin TodaySome 30 states have “filial support” or “filial responsibility” laws, which create a statutory duty for adult children to provide financially for their parents if the parents cannot otherwise pay. They’re based on the centuries-old moral principle of filial piety, which holds that adult children have a duty to respect, obey and personally care for elderly parents and relatives. >> Sign up for the AARP Money Matters newsletter Typically, these laws obligate adult children to pay for their indigent parents’ …

Medicare and the Marketplace: 4 Things You Need to Know

Posted on 09/30/2013 by |Washington Watch | Comments

Bulletin Today | Personal HealthThere’s a lot to understand about the health insurance marketplace that opens on Oct. 1 — not to mention the Affordable Care Act (or “Obamacare”), which created it. But if you’re on Medicare, there’s really nothing to be confused about. Here are key facts to remember: If you’re on Medicare, don’t worry about the marketplace. The new health exchanges, as they’ve also been called, are for people without insurance. Medicare beneficiaries will continue to have Medicare. Unfortunately, there’s a lot …