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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Low-Income Subsidies for the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit: The Impact of the Asset Test

This study assesses the impact of the requirement that low-income people with Medicare meet an asset test in order to receive additional help paying premiums and cost-sharing under the new Medicare drug benefit.Report (.pdf)American Journal of Managed Care Article: Who Will Be Denied Medicare Prescription Drug Subsidies Because of the…

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Medicare Prescription Drug Enrollment Update

Medicare Drug Benefit Enrollment UpdateThis enrollment update breaks down and explains the statistics related to enrollment under the new Medicare drug benefit and the separate low-income subsidy program that provides additional assistance. The enrollment update summarizes the latest enrollment figures released by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and…

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Medicare at a Glance

This fact sheet provides a basic overview of the Medicare program, including how it is financed, who is eligible, and what benefits are covered under the program. In addition, it describes supplemental health insurance, out-of-pocket spending by people on Medicare, and data on Medicare expenditures and financing.

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Private Plans In Medicare: A 2007 Update

This March 2007 issue brief, commissioned by the Kaiser Family Foundation, examines changes between 2006 and 2007 in the availability of and enrollment in Medicare Advantage and Medicare prescription drug plans overall and in urban and rural areas. It also focuses on the firms that are offering various types of…

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Medicare Advantage: Key Issues and Implications for Beneficiaries

On June 28, 2007, Foundation Vice President Tricia Neuman testified before the House Budget Committee about Medicare Advantage plans and their implications for beneficiaries. Testimony (.pdf)

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

The Federal Government’s Authority To Regulate Advertising in Medicare

This policy brief, prepared for the Kaiser Family Foundation by Vicky Gottlich at the Center for Medicare Advocacy, explains the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ legal authority to regulate advertising and other information issued by the private companies that contract with the government to provide Medicare benefits. The brief…

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Medicare Advantage 2014 Spotlight: Plan Availability and Premiums

This data spotlight report examines trends in the Medicare Advantage marketplace, including the choices available to Medicare beneficiaries in 2014, premium levels and other plan features. Medicare beneficiaries, on average, will have 18 private Medicare Advantage plans available to them in 2014, reflecting both new plans entering the market and old plans exiting it. If Medicare Advantage enrollees remain in their current plans, average monthly premiums will rise by almost $5 per month, or 14 percent, to $39 per month. The analysis also examines some benefits provided by Medicare Advantage plans including drug coverage and caps on out-of-pocket spending, and finds that average out-of-pocket limits across all plans will climb 11 percent to $4,797 in 2014. Additionally, this analysis examines changes in the types of plans available (HMOs, PPOs, etc.), including special needs plans in 2014.

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Medicare Advantage 2014 Spotlight: Enrollment Market Update

This Data Spotlight provides an overview of Medicare Advantage enrollment patterns in March 2014, and examines variations by plan type, state, and firm. It also analyzes trends in premiums paid by beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans and describes the changes in limits on out-of-pocket expenses and prescription drug coverage in the Part D “donut hole” provided by the plans in 2014.

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

How are Seniors Choosing and Changing Health Insurance Plans?

This report summarizes first-hand accounts of seniors’ Medicare private plan decision making strategies, based on focus groups conducted in four cities. Seniors found the initial plan selection process overwhelming due to the volume of information they received and their inability to organize it. Few used the government’s online comparison tool, and those that did cite several shortcomings. Many relied on advice from sources they trust, including insurance agents, plan representatives, friends, family members, doctor’s offices and pharmacists. After they enroll in a plan, many seniors did not revisit their initial decision or review plan options without the strong provocation of a substantial increase in cost, change in coverage, or shift in personal health care needs. Moreover, they feared that a change in plans may disrupt their care, or lead to an unforeseen increase in out-of-pocket costs, and require them to learn new rules and requirements. They are doubtful they would end up in a plan that is appreciatively different or better for them. Overall, seniors preferred to have numerous choices in plans but would like personalized help and advice from experts to ease the process.

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Figure 1: Medicare Advantage Enrollment in 2014 Exceeds Projections by 6 Million Beneficiaries

Medicare Advantage: Take Another Look

This Policy Insight explores possible explanations for the continued rise in Medicare Advantage enrollment between 2010 and 2013 in spite of a projected decrease following payment changes in the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

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