So, what’s new with Medicare this year?
As a government-regulated health insurance program, it should come as know real surprise that the finer details associated with Medicare costs, benefits, and availability often change from year to year.
By 2022, Medicare costs have seen major spikes in certain aspects of each Part of Medicare. Luckily, there may be ways for you to mitigate these costs. Read on to learn everything you need to know about Medicare costs in 2022.
New Changes to Medicare Costs for 2022
If you’ve noticed increases in your out-of-pocket Medicare expenses and premiums this year, unfortunately, you aren’t alone. Surprisingly, this recent cost increase isn’t based on increased profit for insurance companies or healthcare providers.
In fact, Medicare is required to increase its premiums each year in order to keep up with inflation, the rising costs of medical treatment, and any unanticipated surges in healthcare needs (i.e. COVID-19 variants and other viral outbreaks).
Typically, this price increase is negligible. For 2022, however, it’s been a bit more noticeable. As stated, COVID-19 is at least partially to blame for the stark increase in Medicare pricing. That said, other elements have also played a factor.
New laws, such as the 2021 Continuing Appropriations Act, have also limited the changes Medicare could make to its premiums during the pandemic. Now, those restrictions have been somewhat relaxed, leaving Medicare alone to make up for its lost funding all while still keeping prepared for the next major emergency.
Additionally, it has been reported by numerous reliable sources that the U.S. is currently experiencing the largest cost-of-living adjustment in over 30 years. All of these factors combined have contributed to the following price changes in accordance with the various parts of Medicare:
Cost Changes for Medicare Part A
Though most Medicare beneficiaries do not pay a premium for Medicare Part A, the hospital insurance portion of Medicare, those who have not paid payroll taxes for at least ten years will see a premium increase of up to $499 per month this year.
The 2022 Medicare Part A deductible changes, however, will affect all Medicare beneficiaries, regardless of tax contributions. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have announced a $1556 deductible for hospital services, with cost-sharing obligations of $389 per day after 60 days, and $770 for ‘reserve days’ that begin after 90 days of hospitalization.
Cost Changes for Medicare Part B
Unfortunately, costs associated with Medicare Part B, the medical insurance portion of Medicare, have also seen an uptick. Most notably, the 2022 Medicare deductible has increased to $223 per year.
Premium increases for many Medicare Part B beneficiaries are also expected. In recent years, the average Part B premium has hovered around $170 per month for most Americans. This year, however, households with higher incomes may see increased premiums for Part B, though cost-sharing obligations will stay the same (approximately 20 percent).
Cost Changes for Medicare Part D
Medicare Part D, the prescription drug coverage portion of Medicare, is usually privatized (at least partially). In short, this means that any cost changes for medicare Part D in 2022 are largely subject to the market.
Based on your location of residence and your Part D provider, your out-of-pocket prescription medication costs may vary widely. That said, there has been a recent executive and congressional support for capping insulin prices at $35 per month.
Still, as inflation continues to soar and suppliers continue to struggle to meet medication demands, you may see an increase in your Medicare Part D premiums depending on your specific plan.
What about Medicare Part C?
Medicare Part C, also known as Medicare Advantage, is similar to Medicare Part D in the sense that this portion of Medicare is privatized. This means that Medicare Advantage plans are sold by individual insurance companies. As such, their exact pricing, availability, and coverage benefits can vary dramatically from plan to plan.
The good news is, that Medicare Advantage plans typically include more comprehensive coverage for healthcare needs like vision, dental, and hearing care. Additionally, prescription drug coverage is often built right into the plan.
Believe it or not, it is possible to save money on your Medicare coverage and receive even more benefits, as Medicare Advantage plans can even be available with premiums as low as $0.
Interested in learning more about your potential eligibility for Medicare Advantage coverage? If so, don’t hesitate to reach out to the Medicare Advantage experts and licensed insurance agents at MedicareInsurance.com today!