Medicare Part B premium hike will be smaller than expected

October 27, 2011

Seniors caught a break Thursday when the Obama Administration announced that Medicare Part B premiums won’t rise as much as expected in 2012.

The premium for Part B – which funds doctor and other outpatient services – will be $99.90 in 2012, up just 3 percent compared with this year. And the Medicare Part B deductible will be $140, a decrease of $22 from 2011.

The official government 2012 Part B premium forecast had been $106.60 – an increase that would have taken a significant bite out of Social Security’s cost-of-living adjustment (COLA). Although Social Security beneficiaries will receive a 3.6 percent raise next year, the average beneficiary’s increase would have been shaved to 2.95 percent if the larger Part B increase had been implemented. Part B premiums are deducted from most seniors’ Social Security benefits.

Today’s news means that seniors receiving the average monthly Social Security benefit ($1,177) will see a net 3.3 percent gain in payments – just under $39 per month.

In 2010, the Part B premium jumped to $110.50 from $96.40, and it rose to $115.40 in 2011. The rate is determined partly by healthcare inflation — but also the number of seniors who actually are subject to higher premiums. By law, the premium cannot rise in any given year by a greater amount than the Social Security COLA – a “hold harmless” provision aimed at preventing Social Security payments from ever falling. About 75 percent of beneficiaries were exempted in this way from Part B premium increases in 2010 and 2011 – years in which no Social Security COLA was made.

Medicare enrollees cover 25 percent of projected Part B program costs; in 2010 and 2011, that projected cost was borne by a much more narrow base of beneficiaries. This year’s Social Security COLA means that beneficiaries’ portion of Part B cost will be spread across a much broader pool of seniors, resulting in the more modest premium hike.

The new premium will mean a decrease for seniors who enrolled in Medicare for the first time this year, and have been paying the $115.40 rate. It should also lead to decreases for high-income seniors, who were subject to the higher base premium, along with additional income-related surcharges.

6 comments

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The problem is that the system and the government has yet to address the real issues relating to fraud, and reimbursement rates.

Posted by wallynm | Report as abusive

Is medicare premium of $247.00 in 2014 factual as stated below? Of course, I don’t know if DM Ripaco & Associates is the actual source.

MEDICARE PREMIUM INCREASE
>
> For those of you who are on Medicare, read the article below. It’s a short but
> important article that you probably haven’t heard about in the mainstream news:
>
> The per person Medicare insurance premium will increase from the present monthly
> fee of
>
> $96.40, rising to:
>
> $104.20 in 2012;
>
> $120.20 in 2013; And
>
> $247.00 in 2014.
>
> These are provisions incorporated in the Obama care legislation, purposely
> delayed so as not to ‘confuse’ the 2012 re-election campaigns.
> Send this to all seniors that you know, so they will know who’s throwing them
> under the bus.

DM Ripaco & Associates, LLC
266 Willow Bay Drive
Murrells Inlet, SC 29576
843-357-2591 phone
843-357-2593 fax
609-315-0617 mobile
howard.richter27@gmail.com

Posted by Monroe61 | Report as abusive

Monroe61,

What exactly would you like us to forward? The Reuters article that is backed up by facts. The article showing MC part B premiums are going up less than anticipated.
Or do you want us to forward your partisan laced spam comment? How many Stories are you going to post the same deceitful comment to. No verifiable sources or links to articles that back up your fraudulent figures.

Are you being paid by someone or some group to mislead people.

Posted by kentay | Report as abusive

According to this Medicare web site it is possible to shop around and save a ton of money. Insurance rates are based on claims. Look for the Medicare supplement insurer that has lower claims and lower rates.

Posted by MedicareMan | Report as abusive

I’m confused. Is the comment by DM Ripaco and associates true? Can someone clear this up? Monroe61 is saying that DM’s comments are deceitful. What are the facts?

Posted by ogerman | Report as abusive

Ogerman, no need to believe anything but the NEWS. This is just another hater chain mail. If it WERE true, don’t you think you would have heard about it in the 20 debates between the Republican candidates? Don’t you think you would have heard it on the news? You bet you would.
Of course, if you get your “official” news from emails, then believe away. Oh, and your IRS payment was rejected, send them you mother’s maiden name, your bank account number and pin.

Posted by disguyiknow | Report as abusive