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View Diary: State of the Union 2013: #3 (228 comments)

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  •  Medicare Alert! Just heard these words: (0+ / 0-)

    We'll ask more from our "wealthier seniors."

    Is that a call for expanding "means testing" of Medicare from 5% to 25% of seniors?

    Will check out SOTU transcript when it's available, in order to verify.  Then will post the Administration's proposed policy on "means testing" for Medicare.

    Will also check Kaiser Health News in the coming days, to see what they say in regard to this announced policy change.

    Mollie

    "Only he who can see the invisible, can do the impossible." --Frank L. Gaines

    "If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

    by musiccitymollie on Tue Feb 12, 2013 at 06:34:01 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  A wealthy plutocrat makes over $400K (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      musiccitymollie

      A wealthy senior is probably someone making $40K.

      GRRRRRRR

      •  Not for the purpose of means testing Medicare. (0+ / 0-)

        I'm getting ready to post a Kaiser Health News article that addressses this prop0sed policy change.

        They say in the article that this applies to folks (in today's money) that have an annual income of approximately $40,000.

        I'll post it in a few minutes, too.

        Mollie

        "Only he who can see the invisible, can do the impossible." --Frank L. Gaines

        "If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

        by musiccitymollie on Tue Feb 12, 2013 at 07:00:27 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Here's the Kaiser News Article. Will take a few (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          zaka1

          minutes to dig out the policy brief on means testing, but I'll post it, shortly.

          Here's the Kaiser piece excerpt, and thelink.

          Affluent Seniors Could Take A Hit On Medicare

          By Mary Agnes Carey and Marilyn Werber Serafini
          KHN Staff Writers
          Nov 13, 2011

          In the scramble to come up with a deficit-reduction deal by Thanksgiving, members of Capitol Hill's super committee appear to have one group squarely in their cross hairs: high-income Medicare beneficiaries. . . .

          House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has left the door open to asking wealthy seniors to pay more, and public opinion polls show support for the idea. . . .

          Current law already requires seniors with annual incomes of $85,000 and above ($170,000 for couples) to pay more than others for Medicare Part B, which covers doctor bills and other outpatient costs.  In 2012, the standard premium will be $99.90 per month.  Premiums for wealthier seniors will range from $139.90 to $319.70 per month.  

          About 5 percent of seniors fall into the higher-premium group now. President Barack Obama wants the share of beneficiaries paying more for their coverage to grow over time to one quarter of all beneficiaries. If that were the case today, people with incomes as low as $40,000 a year would be paying higher Medicare premiums, according to Tricia Neuman, senior vice president of the Kaiser Family Foundation. (KHN is an editorially independent program of the foundation.)

          Mollie

          "Only he who can see the invisible, can do the impossible." --Frank L. Gaines

          "If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

          by musiccitymollie on Tue Feb 12, 2013 at 07:09:55 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Here's the actual policy recommendation that (0+ / 0-)

            the President made in 2011 to the Supercommittee.

            This is the policy change that Kaiser Health News is referring to in their article.

            This policy paper is from the White House website.  This is from the Health Savings section, Pages 35-43.  This specific policy is from Pages 38-39.

            LIVING WITHIN OUR MEANS AND INVESTING IN THE FUTURE

            Increase income-related premiums under Medicare Parts B and D.  

            Under Medicare Parts B and D, certain beneficiaries pay higher premiums as a result of their higher levels of income.  

            Beginning in 2017, the Administration proposes to increase income-related premiums under Medicare
            Parts B and D by 15 percent and maintain the income thresholds associated with income-related premiums until 25 percent of beneficiaries under Parts B and D are subject to these premiums.
             

            This will help improve the financial stability of the Medicare program by reducing the Federal subsidy of Medicare costs for those beneficiaries who can most afford them.

            This proposal will save approximately $20 billion over 10 years.

            Mollie

            "Only he who can see the invisible, can do the impossible." --Frank L. Gaines

            "If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

            by musiccitymollie on Tue Feb 12, 2013 at 07:22:01 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Well yeah - $40K (0+ / 0-)

          $40K is wealthy?  HA!  

          I swear this is what I just so hate about these New Democrats.  They let people making over $400K in TAXABLE income get off the hook on income taxes and then they screw someone making $40K on Medicare.

          This is NOT fair and it is NOT balanced!

          •  Spot on. We need to try to spur some progressive (0+ / 0-)

            activism, in hopes that we can at least raise the income level (but hopefully, just get the entire idea thrown out).

            Mollie

            "Only he who can see the invisible, can do the impossible." --Frank L. Gaines

            "If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

            by musiccitymollie on Tue Feb 12, 2013 at 07:53:11 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

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