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PPO Health Insurance Plan - What Is It?

PPO Health Insurance Plan - What Is It?

PPO Insurance

A Preferred Provider Organization, or a PPO, is health care organized by a particular insurance company. Medical professionals, hospitals, and clinics are contracted by the insurance company to work with the PPO system. The PPO decides the managed medical care guidelines and the fee schedule and the medical professionals, hospitals, and clinics that are contracted by the PPO agree to these terms.

A PPO is similar to a health maintenance organization (HMO) in that it offers a network of health care professionals available to the insured person; however, a PPO is more flexible than an HMO in that a PPO also offers the option of seeing an out-of-network health care professional.   Complete Article


Term Life Insurance Cost - The Least Expensive Life Insurance  

Term Life Insurance Cost - The Least Expensive Life Insurance  

Term Life

Term life insurance policies are the least expensive life insurance policies. This is because you are purchasing life coverage only when you purchase a term life insurance policy, whereas with other life insurances, such as whole life insurance, you are also purchasing an investment component.

Many whole life insurance policies call these investments "retirement savings," but there are many other ways to save for retirement without having to choose a life insurance policy that may not be the best for you. Since you are not paying for anything but life insurance with a term life insurance policy, term life insurance is less expensive than any other life insurance option for the coverage offered.  Complete Article


Gap In Medicare Coverage Hitting Seniors Enrolled in Part D - What Happened?  Donut Hole Hits Drug Plan Recipients with Extra Costs

Gap In Medicare Coverage Hitting Seniors Enrolled in Part D - What Happened?  Donut Hole Hits Drug Plan Recipients with Extra Costs

Donut Hole

Some Medicare patients are left paying large sums of money because of a gap in Medicare coverage called the “doughnut hole”.  Once a patient reaches a threshold in prescription drug expenditures they are responsible for 100 percent of the cost.  This threshold is reached between $2,250 and $5,100 of the total drugs cost (not the out of pocket expense).  After the drug costs reach $5,100, Medicare will pay 95 percent of the expenses.    

Many Medicare beneficiaries were unaware of this doughnut hole according to a report by the Baltimore Sun.  Even if patients are aware of the doughnut hole, many of them are only keeping track of their out-of-pocket expenses and not the total cost of the drugs.  The donut hole is reached when the total cost of the drugs reaches $2,250, not when the recipients out of pocket expense reach $2,250.  Complete Article  


Health Insurance - Is Some Better Than None?

Health Insurance - Is Some Better Than None?

Insurance

About 50 years ago, health insurance started to be an attractive incentive offered by employers to attract and keep good employees. Overall, group plans tended to be inexpensive for employers, with employees contributing a small amount of money or none at all to secure health insurance for themselves and their families.

It was more expensive for individuals to pay for non-group policies, but coverage was fairly affordable. Then medical costs started to rise, people started to live longer and the medical profession became adept at curing various diseases and saving and prolonging the lives of people with serious injuries and life-threatening illnesses. Health care and insurance prices started rising much more quickly than annual incomes and premiums began taxing both employers, who were paying the lion’s share of premiums, and for employees, to whom businesses often passed on costs through larger deductibles, greater out of pocket expenses and higher premiums. Complete Article


Medicaid Identification Rules Relaxed - New Proof of Citizenship Documentation Requirements Eased

Medicaid Identification Rules Relaxed - New Proof of Citizenship Documentation Requirements Eased

Medicaid Card

New regulations have relaxed citizenship documentation requirements for about 8 million seniors and beneficiaries with disabilities, according to a report from UPI.  The Kaiser Network reports that “Consumer and patient advocates on Friday said they "welcomed" the new exemptions to Medicaid proof-of-citizenship rules announced last week but said more changes are needed to ensure millions of other beneficiaries do not lose coverage.”

This is after the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 took effect July 1st requiring Medicaid recipients seeking care to show proof of U.S. citizenship, such as a birth certificate, passport or other form of identification.  This act was intended to ensure that illegal immigrants do not benefit from the Medicaid program. 


Medicare Part D Deadline May Be Waived - How to Choose A Plan and Calculate the Late Enrollment Penalty

Medicare Part D Deadline May Be Waived - How to Choose A Plan and Calculate the Late Enrollment Penalty

Medicare Card

The Senate may move the Medicare Part D enrollment deadline for those who have not already signed up.  Technically, the senate is considering a waiver.  Charles Grassley, the Senate Finance Chairman, has introduced a $1.7 billion measure to suspend a penalty for elderly Americans who missed yesterday's deadline for enrolling in the new Medicare drug benefit.

For those who have not enrolled, the penalty could add a number of dollars to each month’s premium.  The penalty amounts to 1 percent of the state average (some experts say it is the national average and others believe it could be the regional average) premium for each month you delay enrollment after May of this year.  Here is an example:  If you wait until 2011 to sign-up, you will be penalized for 66 months.  If the state (or region) average premium is $40 per month at the time you enroll in 2011, and you choose a plan that costs $30 per month, your monthly premium will be $30 plus $26.80.  Medicare Part D Deadline May Be Waived - How to Choose A Plan and Calculate the Late Enrollment Penalty


A Step-by-Step Guide to Medicare Part D's Prescription Drug Plan

A Step-by-Step Guide to Medicare Part D's Prescription Drug Plan

Medicare's enrollment schedule

If you're like many Americans, the introduction of Medicare Part D is nothing short of confusing.

By May 15 of this year, if you haven't signed up for the program, you could end up without drug coverage, or have to pay the penalty for applying after the deadline. The penalty is a 1% increase in your premium for each month after May 2006 in which you don't enroll.

The following is a step-by-step guide designed to get down to the basics of Medicare Part D, cut through the jargon, and tells you exactly what you need to know.

Step #1: Eligibility. Are you eligible for Medicare's new prescription drug plan? Simply put, if you are eligible for Medicare Part A or Part B, you are eligible for Part D.  A Step-by-Step Guide to Medicare Part D's Prescription Drug Plan


Uninsured People on the Rise – Survey said Working Adults don’t have Health Insurance 

Uninsured People on the Rise – Survey said Working Adults don’t have Health Insurance 

Cover The Uninsured Organization

More people are going without health insurance compared to previous years.  A survey conducted by The Commonwealth Fund has a report called, Gaps in Health Insurance: An All-American Problem, said that more uninsured adults are skipping preventive medical treatment and end up in the Emergency Room or Hospital.

The statistics reported in this survey are realistic to what is going on in the United States with health insurance and medical bills.  The cost of health insurance have skyrocketed in the past few years and companies are paying less of the share and trimming back benefits to fend of the extra expense with health insurance.  Uninsured People on the Rise – Survey said Working Adults don’t have Health Insurance 


Medicare Part D Enrollment Deadline - May 15th - What to Look For When Choosing a Prescription Drug Insurance Company Program

Medicare Part D Enrollment Deadline - May 15th - What to Look For When Choosing a Prescription Drug Insurance Company Program

Medicare Part D

Potential Medicare Part D Drug Plan participants have about three weeks to choose a company to avoid paying a penalty.  The May 15th deadline is approaching and Medicare is in their final push to help enroll seniors, aged 65 and older.  It is estimated that between 60 and 75 percent of those seniors that can benefit from the program have enrolled, depending on location. 

Medicare has added additional staffing to their hotline number as the deadline approaches.  Participants can call 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and talk to a staff member.  The Medicare toll free number is: 1-800-633-4277.  You can also check with your local senior’s center for possible classes or seminars.

There are numerous drug plans available.  Participants need to list all of the drugs they take, both generic and name brand, before they determine which plan works best for them.  Medicare Part D Enrollment Deadline - May 15th - What to Look For When Choosing a Prescription Drug Insurance Company Program


How to Save Money on Prescriptions by Buying Online - Compared Costco and Sam's Club With International Generics from Canadian Pharmacies

How to Save Money on Prescriptions by Buying Online - Compared Costco and Sam's Club With International Generics from Canadian Pharmacies

Shop online & save

I have always heard that Costco was the lowest price on prescription drugs.  Don’t get me wrong, they do have great prices, especially on generics, but even their prices can be beat.  The last time I went to Costco I noticed that my three month supply of Diovan HCT went up to a little over $190.  That was just too much.

The Diovan is a brand name drug, and there are no generics sold here in the US.  I did a little research and found that there was an “international generic” made overseas available from a Canadian Pharmacy.  I became a little skeptical when they told me I could only pay with money order – no credit cards. 

Sure the International generic was less money, but what was I going to get?  I was quoted about $135 for a three month supply.  I noticed that their month’s supply was only 28 pills compared to 30 pills through Costco.  How to Save Money on Prescriptions by Buying Online - Compared Costco and Sam's Club With International Generics from Canadian Pharmacies


How to read an Insurance Policy - How to Understand Legal Contract Terminology

How to read an Insurance Policy - How to Understand Legal Contract Terminology

Antique Contract

If you ever put off reading the fine print of the any insurance policy you will find this article helpful in understanding what to look for in the fine print.

Insurance policies are a contract between you and the insurer, and are not written so the average person could pick one up, read it from front to back, and come away with a meaningful understanding of what they just read.  The structure of a policy is usually very confusing, and they are loaded with special definitions.  Fortunately, most insurance contracts share a similar structure.  Once you understand how it is structured, you are in a much better position to understand what is and what is not covered under the contract.  Insurance policies contain the following general sections, but are not always set-up in the same order.  How to read an Insurance Policy - How to Understand Legal Contract Terminology


Do you really need Life Insurance - Who should have Life Insurance and What Kind of Policy

Do you really need Life Insurance - Who should have Life Insurance and What Kind of Policy

Life Insurance Certificate from the 1920's

Life Insurance doesn’t benefit the person that dies; it benefits the family that is left behind.  Not everyone should have life insurance.  But there are prime areas in your life that make it a valuable investment.

Life insurance could be for anyone at any age.  But the reality is that the most helpful life insurance policy is for a family income earner that is currently raising a family.  If there are young children that are not able to support themselves you should have a life insurance policy.  Today, it is more common for both parents to work to earn enough to survive.  If you can’t make it on one income you definitely need to have a life insurance policy.  If you both are income earners then both should have a life insurance policy.  Do you really need Life Insurance - Who should have Life Insurance and What Kind of Policy


Uninsured Patients Pay More For Hospital Visits Than Insurance Companies - Americans Travel To Foreign Counties For Medical Procedures

Uninsured Patients Pay More For Hospital Visits Than Insurance Companies - Americans Travel To Foreign Counties For Medical Procedures

Bumrungrad

Many Americans understand that there is a problem with the health care industry.  The problem is that everyone has their own idea what that problem is.  Some blame the insurance companies while other blame the pharmaceuticals or the hospitals.  Many Americans have seen their insurance coverage disappear with their jobs, finding themselves shopping for insurance with expensive pre-existing conditions. 

The CBS News Program 60 minutes ran a story Sunday night about the problem faced by the uninsured in cases of emergency.  It has to be one of the most eye-opening health care stories to broadcast in recent years.

Dan Rather interviewed a California man who was injured and taken to the local emergency room.  The hospital bill came to a staggering $246,000.  The family contacted a local community activist named KB Forbes, who said "Basically, hospitals charge uninsured people four or five times more than what they would accept as payment in full from an insurance company.”  Forbes considered this price gouging.  Uninsured Patients Pay More For Hospital Visits Than Insurance Companies - Americans Travel To Foreign Counties For Medical Procedures


The Economic Implications of Buying Drugs Online - Canadian and US Internet Pharmacies For Generic and Name Brands

The Economic Implications of Buying Drugs Online - Canadian and US Internet Pharmacies For Generic and Name Brands

100 mg Viagra

Although the Internet is fairly new (at least to the mainstream) online shopping has grown by leaps and bounds. Now you can buy almost anything you need, from food to fishing equipment, right through your computer. Of course, this has meant that commerce has been forced to adapt to the changing consumer landscape and some industries have been scrambling to catch up with the crowd.

It is no different for the pharmaceutical industry as online pharmacies appear to be popping up everywhere you turn. The prevalence of online pharmacies is a hot topic, especially when it comes to foreign-based companies selling prescription and non-prescription drugs to Americans for lower, more affordable prices. But in addition to foreign-based online pharmacies are a growing number of U.S. based companies offering medication to Americans ­ making it easier and more convenient to receive much needed prescription drugs.  The Economic Implications of Buying Drugs Online - Canadian and US Internet Pharmacies For Generic and Name Brands


Medigap Insurance To Play A Major Role In Helping Seniors Survive

Medigap Insurance To Play A Major Role In Helping Seniors Survive

Escalating costs

Medigap Needed To Supplement Inevitable Health Care Cost Increase Over Next Decade.  Health care expenses will increase by about 72% over the next decade say Analysts who anticipate a 7.2% per annum increase in health care costs.

Another trend within the new government projections is an ever-growing reliance on the government to foot the bill for health care. By the end of the next decade, the government will pay for about half of the nation's medical costs. The other half may need Medigap Insurance to supplement out-of-pocket escalating costs not covered by Medicare.

Especially seniors need to be aware of the predicted increases in the two main health sectors that apply to them. The country's aging population is expected to drive increases in two key areas of health care spending: nursing homes and home health. Spending on nursing homes will grow from $121.7 billion in 2005 to $216.8 billion in 2015. Home health will grow from about $49 billion last year to $103.7 billion in 2015. It represents the nation's fastest-growing sector in health care. 
Medigap Insurance To Play A Major Role In Helping Seniors Survive


The Rising Cost of Prescription Drugs

The Rising Cost of Prescription Drugs

Drug Costs on the Rise

If you’re like many Americans, the rising cost of prescription drugs may be costing you your health. In particular, seniors living on a fixed income with no insurance are finding it difficult to pay for necessary prescriptions out-of-pocket, and as a result, may be failing to receive the treatment they need to stay healthy. Often, the struggle can put a big strain on seniors’ finances.

But why are prescription drug prices so high, especially when most people who require medication are usually not in a financial position that allows them to afford the full price tag? The real reasons are more complicated than what you might suspect, but one thing’s for certain ­ drug prices have been skyrocketing.  The Rising Cost of Prescription Drugs


The President and States Step in As Confusion Occurs with New Medicare Part D Program

The President and States Step in As Confusion Occurs with New Medicare Part D Program

Trouble getting medications

It has been reported that tens of thousands of Medicare recipients have been unable to get their medication under the new Part D program.  The Bush administration has stepped in telling insurers that they must provide a 30-day supply of any drug their beneficiary has been taking.  Also, if a beneficiary is poor, they may not be charged more than $5 for brand named drugs and $2 for generics. 

Some states have declared public health emergencies. Certain states have even stepped up to the plate saying they would pay for prescriptions that should be covered by the federal Medicare program.

The program has been frustrating for many pharmacists.  The vast majority of beneficiaries have been covered, but there have been glitches.  There are reports of insurance companies being swamped with phone calls.  The President and States Step in As Confusion Occurs with New Medicare Part D Program


Should you use health Insurance to Buy Medical Equipment like a CPAP Machine

Should you use health Insurance to Buy Medical Equipment like a CPAP Machine

Remstar Auto

My Dad recently got diagnosed with sleep apnea.  This is a condition that many people are unaware that they have because they are asleep when it occurs.  If you are overweight and snore it is a good idea to get tested for it because sleep apnea has been shown to lead to strokes, high blood pressure and other ailments. The treatment is a sure-fire way to stop snoring. 

My father attended a sleep study and the doctor prescribed him a CPAP machine for treatment of his sleep apnea.  The prescription was sent to a medical supply outlet similar to Apria.  These companies are good at filing the claims and going through the rigermarole in getting you your medical device or equipment. 

But is it always best to go through an insurance provider to get your equipment?  Not necessarily.  Many medical equipment providers benefit by pushing the lowest cost item at the highest price.  Should you use health Insurance to Buy Medical Equipment like a CPAP Machine


How to choose a Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan before the Deadlines

How to choose a Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan before the Deadlines

PDP regions for Part D Plan

Medicare part D coverage started on Nov. 15th this year.  It is also call Medicare’s new prescription drug plan.  The goal of Medicare Part D is to help subsidize drug coverage through private-insurance companies. 

There are over 60 different plans to choose from which makes it a complicated procedure to figure out which plan is the right one.  The elderly and disabled who are covered with Medicare will now be able to get drug coverage through a private insurance company.  The plans vary depending on location.  Each region of the country has different benefits, costs, and terms. How to choose a Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan before the Deadlines


How to Pick a Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan

How to Pick a Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan

Medicare Part D

Medicare Part D is a plan where insurance companies can offer different programs.  The programs can vary from state to state. Many seniors will be forced to join the new Program D even though it is extremely confusing for most. 

The first thing you will need to do is to write down each medication you use.  Then examine the programs one by one to determine which programs will cover your prescriptions.  Separate these programs from the ones that will not cover your medicine. 

This is the daunting task.  There are many insurance companies in each state and many of these companies will offer multiple Part D plans.  Besides being confusing it is a lot of work.  How to Pick a Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan


A Great Social, Civic and Church Club Project! Help One Another With Part D

A Great Social, Civic and Church Club Project! Help One Another With Part D

Medicare And You

Medicare & You 2006 (MY-06) should have already been in your mailbox.

I must admit and offer high praise to the government and the books sponsor the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). This annual Medicare “bible” has been delivered to its beneficiaries sooner than I can ever remember.

Previous editions of this book sometimes did not arrive until a couple of months after the New Year, which left many confused beneficiaries. This year, it has arrived three months early, as promised by CMS.
A Great Social, Civic and Church Club Project! Help One Another With Part D

 


Helping Seniors Choose A Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan

David Thau

As with most things in our modern technical age, the Internet is the information highway that most people are getting used to traveling. Details covering every single subject are available at the touch of a button or as is commonly stated, 'by word of mouse'. Information about Medicare Part D is no exception and pages of data are easily accessible to most people familiar with the Internet.

To gather a broad spectrum of data in order to make an educated decision requires two main prerequisites: That you own a computer, and that you are sufficiently computer literate to be able to search for the information that you need. Whether it is a matter of financial limitation or reluctance to keep up with modern technology many Senior Citizens don't have the luxury of a computer in spite of the fact that the cost seems to be getting well within the reach of the average man in the street. Unwillingness to get "one of these new fangled gadgets" sometimes also plays a part. 
Helping Seniors Choose A Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan


Californian Seniors getting the lowest Medicare rates

Californian Seniors getting the lowest Medicare rates in America

Medicare Insurance

The monthly cost for Medicare benefits in California will be about $25.41 when offered by companies set up solely to provide Medicare drug coverage. That compares with a national average premium of approximately $32.20, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which administer the federal health program for seniors and the disabled.

"It’s a robust market," said Gary Karr, a spokesman for Medicare. "There are a lot of companies competing for business in California", he added.

Data released on Monday revealed that other Western States will also have lower than average premiums, including Hawaii at $27.44 and Arizona at $28.08 but California still beats them all. North Carolina is the highest at $36.86 followed closely by Louisiana at $36.85.
Californian Seniors getting the lowest Medicare rates


Who Should Consider Joining Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Coverage

Who Should Consider Joining Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Coverage

Who Should Choose D

There are various Medicare Plans and not every Medicare recipient needs to join Medicare Part D.  You will need to research the plan you currently have and decide if Medicare Part D can save you money.

Many Medicare recipients are covered on the Original Medicare plan.  This is a fee-for-service plan that covers many health services and certain drugs.  This plan is good because it will allow you to go to any doctor that accepts Medicare. 

You can buy separate coverage that covers what Medicare calls the “Medigap”.  This is called Medicare Supplement Insurance, and is bought from a private insurer. Who Should Consider Joining Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Coverage


What to look for when comparing Medicare Part D Plans

What to look for when comparing Medicare Part D Plans

What to know

Medicare Part D may not be right for everyone, but it is important to determine if it is right for you.  You could end up paying large sums out of pocket if you opt not to join or join the wrong plan.

Basically, the Administration wanted to put some competition into the Insurance / Medicare market.  Insurance providers submit prescription coverage plans that vary in cost and medication coverage.  You should be careful and choose the plan that best suits your needs. 

The Federal Government has set minimum guidelines for insurance companies that want to participate in Part D coverage.  Some insurers will exceed the minimum.  Part D requires recipients to pay an insurance premium, just like any insurance plan.  Premiums are likely to cost between $15 and $45 per month.  What to look for when comparing Medicare Part D Plans


Medicare Part D Plan is confusing until the PlanFinder Data becomes Available

Medicare Part D Plan is confusing until the PlanFinder Data becomes Available

Medicare Website

Drug prices have skyrocketed and Medicare Part D is an attempt to help Medicare recipients obtain their medicine.  Part D has become very confusing and a major component of it is missing at the Medicare website.  

The missing component at the Medicare website is the PlanFinder.  Recipients need to know which insurers will pay for their particular medicines.  Not every plan is the same and picking the wrong plan could cost you a bundle. 

Check the Medicare website periodically for the drug lists.  Until then make a list yourself of the drugs you are taking.  Also make a note of the dosages of each medication.  Medicare Part D Plan is confusing until the PlanFinder Data becomes Available


New Medicare Part D Drug Plan Insurance Choices and Benefits for Seniors

New Medicare Part D Drug Plan Insurance Choices and Benefits for Seniors

Medicare Part D Coverage

This weekend solicitations will begin for the new Medicare drug prescription plans to be implemented next year.  The new program, known as Medicare Part D, will begin on January 1, 2006.  There will be over 40 options available to beneficiaries in almost every state.  According to the Bush administration most plans will differ slightly from the standard minimum benefit mandated by Congress.

Medicare recipients must pay a $250 deductible and will then be responsible for 25 percent of annual drug costs ranging from $251 to $2,250, according to the New York Times.  Recipients will be responsible for the next $2,850 in expenses and after that Medicare will pay about 95% of the expenses over $5,100. 

This leaves a “coverage gap” of between $2,251 and $5,099.  Some plans may offer less than a $250 deductible.  In most states insurers may also provide drug coverage for those caught in the coverage gap.  New Medicare Part D Drug Plan Insurance Choices and Benefits for Seniors


Extra Help Program may Benefit Low Income Medicare Part D Participants

Extra Help Program may Benefit Low Income Medicare Part D Participants

Extra Help For Part D

There may be benefits to the Medicare Part D drug coverage program.  Because of the out-of-pocket costs with the new Medicare prescription program Part D, Medicare has already sent letters to people who might be eligible for financial assistance.  

The extra assistance program is called “Extra Help”.  If your resources are less than $11,500 (single) or $23,000 (married) you may qualify for extra help paying for Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage. You can fill out an online application for Extra Help.

The financial assistance available through Extra Help is for low and moderate income individuals.  Medicaid eligible individuals on Medicare can receive the benefits if they apply for “Extra Help”.  Extra Help Program may Benefit Low Income Medicare Part D Participants

 
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Copyright 2005 Best Syndication                                            Last Updated Sunday, July 11, 2010 01:18 AM