by Seema Verma, CMS Administrator. This post originally appeared on the CMS blog. To read this article in Spanish, click here.
When you get your new Medicare card in the mail, keep it safe! Guard your card to prevent fraud.
As you may have heard, or perhaps you’ve seen a recent TV commercial, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will soon be issuing every Medicare beneficiary a new Medicare Card, without Social Security Numbers, to prevent fraud, fight identity theft, and keep taxpayer dollars safe, and to help ensure that we always put the needs of patients first.
It’s unfortunate that criminals are increasingly targeting people age 65 or.... Read More
Open Enrollment Season is Right Around the Corner – Are You Ready to #GetCovered?
This past week, I flipped my calendar from August to September, and I started thinking about pumpkins and sweet potatoes, hot chocolate, leaves changing color – and open enrollment for health insurance! This time of year is vitally important to diverse elders, because both Medicare and the Affordable Care Act have had a profound impact on our ability to age with health and dignity. Read on for more information and key dates around healthcare open enrollment, and make sure you’re ready to #GetCovered!
Medicare Open Enrollment October 15 – December 7, 2017
Medicare has a huge impact on diverse elders’ ability to get care. Various studies have found that
46% of Latino older adults 43% of Asian.... Read More
Are you managing multiple chronic health conditions? Medicare can help!
Managing your health can be challenging, especially if you have two or more chronic conditions or illnesses. The Connected Care campaign offers information to help you take advantage of new Medicare services that pay for comprehensive care management particularly needed by patients dealing with multiple chronic conditions. If you have Medicare and live with two or more chronic conditions, you may be eligible for chronic care management (CCM) services to help you maximize your health and spend more time with your loved ones.
What does CCM mean for you?
CCM means having a continuous relationship with a.... Read More
Older Adults & the ACA Health Insurance Marketplace: What’s at Stake for 2018
Among its many achievements, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has made great strides in covering more older adults who previously had no access to health care. Before the ACA, many low-income older adults who did not have employer-based coverage had no affordable coverage options to address their growing health care needs prior to becoming eligible for Medicare. Insurance companies were allowed to effectively price lower-income older adults out of the individual market or deny them coverage altogether based on pre-existing conditions. These insurance practices posed.... Read More
ACA Repeal Would Send Native American Uninsured Rate Soaring
The number of Native Americans without health insurance would increase sharply if Republicans in Congress succeed in repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, according to a new report.
The report, from the left-leaning Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, says that proposed cuts to Medicaid and to the subsidies that reduce out-of-pockets costs for low-income individuals purchasing private insurance in the ACA marketplace would jeopardize the coverage of more than 300,000 Native Americans and Alaska Natives.
The uninsured rate among Native Americans would climb by 27.4 percent in Kansas and 36.2 percent in Missouri, according to the report. Kansas is home to approximately 60,000 people who self-identify as either.... Read More
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) older adults face many of the same health and aging challenges other older adults face, but more pronounced. As a result, they are arguably more at risk if the incoming administration and Congress repeals the Affordable Care Act (ACA) without a replacement plan and/or makes significant and harmful changes to Medicaid and Medicare.
LGBT older adults face unique risks within the health care system due to the standard issues facing an aging population combined with their sexual orientation or gender identity, such as:
Aging Combined with Discrimination: Similar to the older population in general, LGBT older adults.... Read More
Repealing the Affordable Care Act without a Replacement Hurts Seniors
by Jennifer Goldberg, Directing Attorney of the Justice in Aging Health Team. This post originally appeared on the Justice in Aging website.
Every day, whether seniors need to see a doctor, receive care in their home, or pay for prescription drugs, Medicare, Medicaid, and the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are lifelines for older adults. However, the entire health care system upon which older adults rely is at risk in the new Congress. Changes to the ACA will dramatically alter the Medicare and Medicaid programs, and jeopardize the care seniors receive each day.
It’s that time of year: Affordable Care Act Open Enrollment on Healthcare.gov. From now until January 31, 2017, Americans can elect to purchase healthcare coverage for 2017. And while there has been a lot of discussion about the cost of Obamacare for consumers, more than 70% of consumers will be able to find an insurance plan on the Marketplace that will cost them less than $75/month.
“Thanks to financial assistance, most Marketplace consumers this year will find plan options with premiums between $50 and $100 per month,” said HHS Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell. “Millions of uninsured Americans qualify for financial assistance, and so could as many as 2.5 million Americans currently paying full price for off-Marketplace coverage. I encourage anyone.... Read More
Winning Strategies to Protect Consumers from Surprise Medical Bills
Even consumers who do their best to get care from providers in their networks may still be charged unexpectedly for out-of-network care – an issue otherwise known as surprise medical bills or balance billing.
Currently, no federal standards on surprise medical bills exist, but the recently updated NAIC network adequacy model act and CMS’ proposed Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters (NBPP) for 2017 can bolster both federal and state action to protect consumers. However, because both the model act and the NBPP set a minimum floor even if implemented, state-driven protections are still the most effective way to shield consumers from unexpected.... Read More
November 1st marks the beginning of an open enrollment period for the Health Insurance Marketplace. From now until January 31, 2016, Americans can elect to purchase healthcare coverage from HealthCare.gov for 2016. (American Indian/Alaska Native members of federally recognized tribes can enroll in the Marketplace any time of year and are not subject to this deadline.) Additionally, eight out of ten people who enrolled in a healthcare plan through the Marketplace qualified for financial help to make their monthly premiums more affordable.
Why do we at the Diverse Elders Coalition care about the ACA and open enrollment? Research shows that people of color, American Indians/Alaska Natives, and LGBT people deal with significant physical and mental health disparities. An older.... Read More
Health Action NM Releases Health Coverage Resource for Native Americans
In collaboration with the National Indian Council on Aging and the Diverse Elders Coalition, Health Action New Mexico has released a resource to help explain how the Affordable Care Act affects Native Americans between the ages 50 and 64. “There is still a great deal of work to be done to raise awareness among tribal communities and urban Indians about new coverage options available through the new health reform law,” said Barbara Webber, Executive Director of Health Action NM. “Our hope is that this fact sheet will be helpful for Native Americans who need health.... Read More