Today’s Hot Topics in Medicare News


Did Trump’s budget include a $2 trillion cut for Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security?

BY DAN CLARK: During his presidential campaign, Donald Trump said he wouldn’t try to cut Medicare or Medicaid.

But his federal budget proposal broke that promise, according to Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, a Democrat from New York City.

“He can’t talk about his own budget, where he threatened to cut $2 trillion from Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid,” Jeffries said about Trump during an interview on CNN’s State of the Union. (read more)

Medicare doesn’t cover everything. Here’s how to avoid surprises

BY SARAH O’BRIEN: Each day in the United States, about 10,000 baby boomers celebrate their 65th birthday. Their gift from good old Uncle Sam is Medicare.

After years of paying payroll taxes at work to help fund this government program, these older Americans finally get their turn to sign up and have health insurance for the rest of their lives.

Yet many new enrollees are surprised to discover that basic Medicare does not cover a variety of health-care expenses that can hit retirees pretty hard. (read more)

Letter: Medicare promise is about to be broken

BY DIANE RECHNER: Now that Republicans got their tax cuts for the wealthy, causing a horrendous deficit, they are going after Medicare, wanting to change it to a voucher system.

Medicare has been a promise to Americans and we have paid taxes for years to know that when we can no longer work, and are existing on Social Security, that our health care would be taken care of through Medicare.

Now that promise is about to be broken if Republicans have their way. (read more)

Humana’s Enrollment Of Seniors In Medicare Advantage Eclipses 3M

BY BRUCE JAPSEN: Humana said its enrollment of seniors in increasingly popular Medicare Advantage plans surged to more than 3 million in the first quarter, boosting total revenue and profits.

Humana, which is amid efforts to buy more doctor practices, clinics and related outpatient medical care provider operations, has long made Medicare Advantage a focus of its insurance business, exiting the individual business last year under the Affordable Care Act. Humana’s individual Medicare Advantage membership rose 6%, or 178,800 seniors, to 3.02 million, the company’s first quarter earnings report said. (read more)

Aetna Adds 250K Medicare Advantage Enrollees Ahead Of CVS Deal

BY BRUCE JAPSEN: Aetna, which is working its way through a sale to CVS Health, said it added 250,000 new customers in its Medicare Advantage plans, a lucrative business for insurers as more U.S. seniors flock to such benefits.

On Wednesday, Aetna said it ended the first quarter with 1.7 million seniors in its Medicare Advantage plans, which is the insurer’s fastest growing business. Aetna has 22 million total health plan members, but growth in its commercial and Medicaid businesses were down compared to Medicare Advantage, the company’s first quarter earnings report shows.

“Our Medicare growth strategy remains on track as we grew to serve nearly 250,000 additional Medicare Advantage members in the first quarter,” Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini  said. “We are pleased with our strong start to the year and remain focused on our business priorities as we plan for our projected combination with CVS Health in the second half of 2018.” (read more)

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