Healthcare Reform: Part D relief in 2010

I actually read the House bill on healthcare reform that was announced on Thursday by Nancy Pelosi – well, I read the parts dealing with Medicare Advantage and Part D. You pretty much need a translator to understand the odd language [...]

AARP advertising to seniors

If you watch much television, you’ve probably seen the advertisements for AARP Medicare insurance products.   Ads for the AARP Medicare Supplement must be on CNN 50 times per day. And I’ve recently noticed an ad for the AARP Medicare [...]

Medicare Part D drug coverage

Medicare Part D drug coverage was introduced in 2006 and  seniors were told they should sign up for this new program.  With monthly premiums around $15 per month and lots of advertising about this new Medicare benefit, most seniors and Medicare [...]

How good is Medicare?

Medicare is a pretty good insurance plan but it has some big gaps and no cap on a person’s medical bills.  For 2010 the Part A deductible will be $1,100.  This means, if you go into the hospital you must pay $1,100 of the hospital bill [...]

New Chronic Illness Plans in Tucson

There’s a new Medicare Advantage company in Tucson with a different way of managing chronic illnesses and patients under its care. CareMore Health Plan Inc, is setting up shop in Tucson with Medicare Advantage plans for people with diabetes [...]

Free Healthcare for seniors….in Florida

November 2009: The debate continues over Medicare Advantage and whether or not private Medicare plans are a good thing for seniors and/or Medicare.  Plan information is now available on the Medicare.gov website where you can compare the details [...]

Say good-bye to your Medicare Supplement?

Medicare Advantage faces cuts because Medicare pays too much money to these private insurance plans which allow seniors to pay low or no monthly premiums and obtain extra benefits.  Medicare Supplements are the next target because seniors who [...]

Free healthcare for seniors….in Florida

The debate continues over Medicare Advantage and whether or not private Medicare plans are a good thing for seniors and/or Medicare.  Plan information is now available on the Medicare.gov website where you can compare the details of plans offered [...]

Medicare Supplements cost Medicare more

A New York Times article (10/15/2009) reported that  “Congress may cut back on the current 100 percent coverage of medical bills for people who wait to buy their first Medigap policy….The change is intended to discourage medically unjustified [...]

Tucson on Page 1 of The Washington Post

An article on today’s front page of the Washington Post talks about how Tucson is in the middle of the debate over Medicare Advantage plans, which Obama wants to cut. Here is the link:  http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/10/14/AR2009101403953.html?hpid=topnews

Medicare Advantage sales: rules, rules, and more rules

Insurance agents have turned up at the homes of seniors stating they are from Medicare and that they need to talk about the senior’s Medicare coverage.   Health fairs have invited seniors in for flu shots and free food, with hopes of getting [...]

Free trade proposed for Medicare

Here is an interesting op-ed piece from truthout.org.  The writer introduces the idea of taking advantage of the much lower costs for healthcare in places outside the United States.  I apologize for using someone else’s writing here, [...]

Healthcare reform and lobbyists

Bill Moyers wrote an op-ed piece for Truthout.org today in which he explains the influence of lobbyists in the debate over healthcare reform – and it’s shocking, though not surprising.  He writes, “If you’ve been watching the [...]

Medicare Advantage changes for 2010: My head is spinning

I’ve spent the last week in half-day, all-day, and multiple-day meetings to learn about Medicare Advantage plans for 2010.  These meetings were for training purposes and arranged by the major players in the Tucson Medicare Advantage market.   [...]

Consumer-Driven Health Care

I have been reading lots of blogs about healthcare reform and I recently found myself corresponding with policy wonks who write about healthcare at a level that is difficult for me to comprehend.  These are PhD-types who study Medicare and [...]

Give me some advice, please.

I really do want your advice after you’ve read this post. Earlier today I wrote that “Tucson HMO’s are not the bad guys”.  Okay, I take that back.  Sometimes they are the bad guys.  But this is because they are run [...]

Tucson Medicare HMO’s are not the bad guys

Opponents of Medicare Advantage have a mantra that says private Medicare plans receive fourteen percent more money per enrollee than is spent on the average Medicare beneficiary.  President Obama and legislators writing healthcare reform bills [...]

Medicare Advantage: Big news in October!

October is a big month for people enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans.  These are people who have chosen to get their Medicare benefits through private plans such as Health Net, Humana, Secure Horizons, Universal, Unicare, and a few other [...]

Medicare Advantage cuts according to AHIP

October 2009:   America’s Health Insurance Plans released the following statement at the end of September, 2009 regarding the impact of proposed cuts to Medicare Advantage: FACT: The impact of proposed cuts to Medicare Advantage (MA) [...]

Help for Medicare Costs

I used to be embarrassed to ask seniors about their income when I met with them to talk about their Medicare coverage, but I’ve realized this is an important question to ask because so many people are living on just their Social Security [...]