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Tag: Medicare

Senators urge Medicare to allow seniors a drug plan do-over

Senators urge Medicare to allow seniors a drug plan do-over

Health
Leading senators are urging Medicare to allow seniors concerned about their drug plan pick for next year to switch if they believe they received inaccurate informationBy RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR Associated PressDecember 6, 2019, 8:49 PM3 min read Leading senators are urging Medicare to allow seniors concerned about their drug plan pick for next year to switch if they received inaccurate information due to changes the agency made this sign-up season. The request from 14 Democrats and one Independent comes as open enrollment for prescription drug coverage ends at midnight Saturday. Medicare hinted Friday in a statement that it will provide such second chances. But the agency said it will post details when sign-up season is over, because a policy announcement now might create confusion. Medic...
Choosing Medicare is a high-stakes decision. How advisors can make sure clients get it right

Choosing Medicare is a high-stakes decision. How advisors can make sure clients get it right

Finance
A senior citizen holds a sign during a rally to protect federal health programs at the 8th Annual Healthy Living Festival on July 15, 2011 in Oakland, California.Justin Sullivan | Getty ImagesFor most people, signing up for Medicare is a retirement rite of passage.But as they turn 65 and sort through their Medicare Part A, B, C and D choices, many individuals can also be vulnerable to costly mistakes.Even done the right way, it's a high-stakes choice. Medicare beneficiaries will need as much as $ 400,000 for health expenses per couple, according to 2018 research from the Employee Benefit Research Institute. That is up from $ 370,000 in 2017."People do feel overwhelmed and baffled by Medicare," said Katy Votava, president of Goodcare.com. "But there are some basic things that an advisor can...
Three big mistakes to avoid during Medicare open enrollment

Three big mistakes to avoid during Medicare open enrollment

Finance
Hero Images | Getty ImagesEven if Medicare's open enrollment period sounds like a big snore fest, you might sleep better next year if you take advantage of it.For the program's 60 million beneficiaries, that yearly fall window — Oct. 15 through Dec. 7 — offers the chance to make changes that take effect Jan. 1. While you aren't required to do anything — your coverage will automatically renew if you take no action — passing on the chance review your plan could cost you in 2020."The danger is that at the time of service, you'll be surprised when you have a different copay or out-of-pocket expense that you weren't anticipating," said Elizabeth Gavino, founder of Lewin & Gavino in New York and an independent broker and general agent for Medicare plans.More from Personal Finance:Couples wei

San Francisco Bay Area Medicare kickbacks scheme charged

Health
San Francisco federal prosecutors have filed complaints against 30 defendants in an alleged multimillion-dollar scheme involving the referral of Medicare patients for cash. The U.S. Attorney's Office says at the center of the complaints unsealed Thursday are Amity Home Health Care, the largest home health care provider in the San Francisco Bay Area, and Advent Care Inc., a provider of hospice services. The office alleges that under the leadership of CEO Ridhima "Amanda" Singh, Amity paid kickbacks to marketers, doctors and other medical professionals in exchange for referral of patients. The complaints say law enforcement officers recorded each defendant making the deals. A telephone message seeking comment was left with Amity. A woman who answered a call to Advent said she had no comment...

Medicare to cover breakthrough gene therapy for some cancers

Health
Medicare says it will cover breakthrough gene therapy for some kinds of blood cancers, increasing access to a potentially life-saving but costly treatment that uses a patient's own cells to destroy malignancies. In a decision issued Wednesday, officials said Medicare will cover CAR-T cell therapies for certain types of lymphoma and leukemia. The cost of the treatments can run to hundreds of thousands of dollars per patient. CAR-T uses gene therapy techniques to turbocharge the patient's own immune system cells, reprogramming them to harbor a "receptor" that zeroes in on cancer. The revved-up immune cells are returned to the patient to fight the cancer. Medicare Administrator Seema Verma said the decision will provide consistent and predictable access nationwide for patients who may have n...