Retirement expert Bob Carlson’s research and knowledge on how to get the most out of healthcare options
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Medicare beneficiaries are used to annual premium increases to go along with the rising cost of medical care. But in 2007 many will be surprised by the new means-tested premiums. Higher income beneficiaries will pay higher premiums. The amount of the increase in premiums will depend on the beneficiary’s income. The higher premium is called […]
The deadline for Medicare beneficiaries to sign up for the new prescription drug plan is drawing near. To avoid penalties, seniors who are in Medicare must sign up for a plan under Part D of Medicare by May 15, 2006. The penalty, if you sign up for a plan later, is an increase in the […]
Are consumers doing the right thing by not purchasing long-term care insurance? Insurers long have been frustrated by the small number of people purchasing LTC insurance. Though more people enter the target age group for the policies, few buy. In 2004, 326,000 new policies worth $700 million were sold. That was a 25% decline from […]
People who plan to have Medicaid pay for their nursing home care are in for some big surprises. A new law that has not received much publicity changes the rules. Medicaid is the program that pays the medical expenses of the nation’s poor. Medicare is the program that pays some medical expenses of older Americans. […]
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The new uncertainty over Medicaid eligibility is not the only reason Medicaid should not be the centerpiece of your long-term care plan. Another concern is that your heirs might receive an unpleasant surprise from the state. When Medicaid decides someone is eligible for it to pay for nursing home care, the individual is told that […]
My file of articles about retiree medical expenses is filling rapidly with unpleasant headlines. One sample sums up the group: “How Safe Are Your Retiree Health Benefits?” Numerous surveys and my own experience lead to one conclusion: Most retirees and pre-retirees greatly underestimate how much medical expenses will be during retirement and are mistaken about […]
The new Medicare Part D program is under way. In past visits we reviewed the key factors to consider when comparing plans for the new prescription drug benefit option. Of course, the bottom line financial costs and benefits also are important. This month we look at how to quantify the financial effects of different plans. […]
Two questions frequently are generated by the Medicare Prescription Drug Program. Where can I learn more about my options? There are numerous sources of help for the new drug plan. Start with the free publication, Medicare and You. The 2006 edition was mailed recently to all Medicare beneficiaries and is available on the Medicare web […]