FICO Eases Pain of Medical Debt on Credit Scores

FICO, the nation’s leading credit-scoring company, is making two changes that could benefit consumers with debt that has gone into collection. In its newest scoring model, FICO will no longer count debt in collection that has been repaid or settled. The company will also discount medical debt in collection, so it has less of a negative impact on consumers’ scores. More than half of unpaid collections involve medical bills. The medical changes alone could boost a consumer’s score by 25 points, FICO said when announcing …

Retiring Early? Pony Up $51,000 Extra for Health Care, Fidelity Says

Are you and your spouse thinking about retiring early? Doing so can cost you, as a couple, an extra $17,000 a year in medical costs, according to a Fidelity Investments analysis. The Boston-based investment company compared the projected average health care costs of couples retiring this year at age 65 with those of couples retiring as early as age 62 and as late as 67. It assumed they would have Medicare coverage at 65, although the analysis doesn’t include costs for nursing home and …

These Web-Based Medical Apps Make House Calls

Think you might have bronchitis, a sinus infection,  or other non-life threatening illness and can’t wait for an appointment with your regular doctor?  Not sure if you should go to the ER?  Have travel plans and worried if you should fly?  Then these online medical-care sites and mobile apps might be your answer. The sites help patients and doctors converse through smartphones, tablets and computers.  In fact, the U.S. telehealth patient population is expected to grow six-fold to 1.3 million …

Medicare Could Save Big by Steering Ambulances Away From Hospitals

Medicare 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 …

How the MacArthur ‘Genius Grants’ Help Us All

The MacArthur Foundation has announced its 2013 MacArthur Fellows. Each year, the foundation provides stipends of $625,000 – popularly known as “genius grants” – to encourage “people of outstanding talent” to pursue their ambitions in the arts, sciences, education, social entrepreneurship and other fields. One of the great things about the MacArthur grants is that they benefit the rest of us, because recipients often do work that touch our lives in one way or another. Past fellows have included people …

Help Find Parkinson’s Cures in Our Lifetime

April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month and AARP is happy to have The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (MJFF) as a guest blog contributor. Throughout the month of April MJFF is sharing insight into the Parkinson’s research landscape, advice on living with Parkinson’s and steps you can take to help find the cure in our lifetime.   Baby boomers are known for revolutionizing everything they touch. In typical hands-on fashion, members of this trailblazing generation are now looking for …