The Affordable Care Act has made many improvements to Original Medicare, including delivering better benefits while curbing costs.
Now, everyone on Medicare can get free preventive services like mammograms and cancer screenings, as well as a yearly wellness visit.
In addition, prescription drugs are more affordable for seniors who hit the donut hole and premiums are barely increasing – some are even decreasing. Take a look:
- Medicare Part A Premium: Part A covers inpatient hospital stays, care in a skilled nursing facility, hospice care, and some home health care. Only about 1 percent of people with Medicare pay a premium for Part A services—you need to have paid Medicare payroll taxes for 40 quarters of employment or be married to someone who did. For those few affected, the 2013 Part A premium is decreasing to $441, down from $451 in 2012.
- Medicare Part A Deductible: This deductible is the cost to people with Medicare for up to 60 days of Medicare-covered inpatient services in the hospitals for each benefit period (a benefit period starts the day a patient is admitted and ends when the patient has been out of the hospital for 60 days in a row.) This will increase to $1,184 in 2013, up from $1156 this year (an increase of 2.4%).
- Medicare Part B Premium: Part B covers certain doctors’ services, outpatient care, medical supplies, and preventive services. The 2013 premium is $104.90 a month, an increase of $5 from 2012. Medicare Part B premiums have gone up slowly over the past five years – an average of less than 2 percent a year, or $8.50 total.
- Medicare Part B Deductible: The deductible will increase to $147 in 2013, from $140. This is still $15 below the deductible in 2011.
- Income-related Adjustments: People with Medicare who report 2011 income above $85,000 a year ($170,000 filing jointly) are legally responsible to cover a larger portion of the cost of their coverage. These premium adjustments range from $42.00 to $230.80 a month for Medicare Part B.