Today in Medicare

Chronic illness care Medicare

How to reduce Medicare spending without cutting benefits

BY CRFB BLOG: When it comes to Medicare, it is possible to save hundreds of billions of dollars without cutting benefits. In testimony to the House Energy & Commerce Committee, the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget‘s (CRFB) senior policy director argued that Medicare reform should begin by pursuing “cost benders” that reform the healthcare system and thus reduce costs (and often improve quality) for individuals and the Medicare program alike. In general, these changes improve the healthcare system – they do not cut benefits. The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) and others have identified many other areas where eliminating or reducing unnecessary payments and subsidies could reduce costs without significantly harming access or quality. Similar savings can come from prescription drugs – as recently suggested by Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney(read more)

Senate committee advances chronic care bill

BY JOYCE FRIEDEN: The Creating High-Quality Results and Outcomes Necessary to Improve Chronic (CHRONIC) Care Act of 2017 would increase access to telehealth for Medicare beneficiaries with chronic illnesses — including those in Medicare Advantage (MA) plans — as well as provide more incentives for enrollees to receive care through accountable care organizations (ACOs). It also would extend the Independence at Home demonstration program to keep people in their homes rather than hospitals, allow reimbursement for more non-health and social services, and extend permanently MA Special Needs plans that target chronically ill beneficiaries. (read more)

NAHC makes recommendations to CMS for Medicare enrollment

BY NAHC: In the interest of promoting smooth transitions to Medicare for older adults and people with disabilities newly eligible for the program, NAHC co-authored a letter to CMS Administrator Seema Verma, suggesting ways to make the “Welcome to Medicare” packages better at ensuring that people new to Medicare avoid the harmful pitfalls, including increased healthcare costs and premiums, gaps in essential health coverage, and disruptions in access to needed care, often associated with honest Medicare enrollment mistakes. (read more)

The new Medicare Plus Card saves you up to 75% on things not covered by Medicare

Medicare doesn’t cover everything. Luckily, those on Medicare can now start saving on out of pocket expenses like prescription drugs, dental, vision, hearing, and more. Over 1 million people have already received their free Medicare Plus Card.

Get your Free Card Here

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