(Reuters) - The Obama administration announced on Thursday that same-sex married couples can qualify for Medicare hospital and physician benefits for the first time.http://www.reuters.com/...
The decision, coming after a 2013 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that struck down a federal ban against same-sex marriage, allows the Social Security Administration (SSA) to determine the eligibility of married gay applicants to Medicare, the federal government's healthcare program for the elderly and the disabled.
"We are working together with SSA to process these requests in a timely manner to ensure all beneficiaries, regardless of sexual orientation, are treated fairly under the law," U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said in a statement.
Cue the howling haters...
Not sure if this is related in any way to the success of the Affordable Care Act earlier in the week, but it sure feels like icing on the cake.
From the comments, TheLizardKing finds valuable info about whom this order helps:
You qualify (for Medicare) at age 65 or older if:http://www.aarp.org/...
* You are a U.S. citizen or a permanent legal resident; and
* You or your spouse has worked long enough to be eligible for Social Security or railroad retirement benefits — usually having earned 40 credits from about 10 years of work — even if you are not yet receiving these benefits; or
* You or your spouse is a government employee or retiree who has not paid into Social Security but has paid Medicare payroll taxes while working.