By Betty Berry, Tuesday, March 1, 2011 Q: Each year when changes occur in Medicare deductibles and coinsurance you recap them in your column. I find that very useful but didn’t see it this year. Did I miss it?
A: No you didn’t miss it. For a variety of reasons that column was never written — but here it is now. Hope it helps. The following changes became effective Jan. 1.
In 2011 the monthly premium for Medicare Part B (medical coverage) is again based on your adjusted gross income. This will be determined via your 2009 income tax return.
The basic monthly premium that is deducted from your Social Security check for those single individuals earning $85,000 or less and for married couples earning $170,000 or less will remain at the same amount they paid last year. For those enrolling in Medicare this year the basic monthly premium will be $115.40.
For individuals with incomes from $85,001 to $107,000 and married couples with incomes between $170,001 and $214,000 the monthly premium for each will be $161.50 (up from $154.70 in 2010.)
For individuals with incomes between $107,001 and $160,000 and married couples with between $214,001 and $320,000 the monthly premium will be $230.70 each (up from $221 in 2010).
For individuals with incomes between $160,001 and $214,000 and couples with incomes between $320,001 and $428,000 the monthly premium will be $299.90 each (up from $287.30 in 2010).
For individuals with incomes greater than $214,000 or couples with incomes greater than $428,000 the monthly premium for each will be $369.10 (up from $353.60 in 2010).
The Part B annual deductible you must pay out-of-pocket before Medicare will cover claims is $162 (up from $155 in 2010).
Medicare Part A (hospital coverage) deductible and coinsurance also increased. In 2011 the hospital inpatient deductible per benefit period will be $1,132 (up from $1,100 in 2010).
Medicare Part A has no coinsurance for the first 60 days of a hospital stay. However, for day 61 through day 90 coinsurance will be $283 (up from $275 in 2010) and for days 91 through 150 the coinsurance will be $566 (up from $550 in 2010).
If you are transferred to a skilled nursing facility and meet Medicare’s strict eligibility requirement there will be no coinsurance for the first 20 days. For days 21 through 100 the coinsurance will be $141.50 (up from $137.50 in 2010).
For those who have assigned their Medicare to a Senior Advantage HMO or PPO there may be additional premiums. Anthem Blue Cross offers two PPOs. Neither have a premium. The Freedom Blue Plan 1 has a $300 deductible and covers Part D Prescription coverage. The Anthem Blue Cross Classic Plan has a $250 deductible but does not offer Part D Prescription coverage.
There are three HMOs offered in Ventura County. Kaiser has no premium and SCAN has a $29 premium. Secure Horizons (offered only in the Western portion of the county) has a premium of $65. All three HMOs offer Part D coverage.
I think that basically covers the Medicare changes for 2011. Sorry that I am so late in getting the information to you.
Tuesday: Seminar 7-8:30 p.m. “Veterans Benefits”, Senior Concerns Day Care Center, 401 Hodencamp Road, Thousand Oaks. For reservations, call 497-0187.
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