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Cost Chaos In Consumer Healthcare

As the consumer healthcare market shifts, more scrutiny is being placed on cost of consumption of services. In a recent New York Times article Nov. 8, 2013, Good Deals on Pills? It’s Anyone’s Guess, Elisabeth Rosenthal reviews cost chaos with drugs.

For example, two popular medications for asthma and allergies, Advair and Rhinocort AQ, used by tens of thousands of Americans are no longer going to be covered by many benefit plans served by Medco/Express Scripts.

Shocked consumers will need to pay $300 and $150 respectively monthly for the brands they’re accustomed to, or find generics.  In many cases, no approved generics are available.

Consumer Healthcare Cost Burden Shifting

 

In the past, consumers of healthcare have not been cognizant of the high cost of health care services or drugs. They presented an insurance card and rarely cared about the actual bill paid by the employer’s benefit plan.

This tradition is over, and the sticker shock over unsubsidized cost of medical and pharmaceutical prices is causing much anxiety.

A new burden is being placed on the consumer, and along with it, confusion. Read the rest of this entry »

What To Know About Medicare Supplement Plans

Open enrollment for Medicare insurance is right now.

Everyone eligible for Medicare (usually 65-years-old) automatically gets Part A and needs to sign up for Part B.

Because Parts A and B don’t cover everything, people can elect to buy supplemental coverage, often called Medicare Supplement insurance.

All of the Medicare Supplement plans, also called Medigap, are standardized in almost every state; yet, there are many options to consider when purchasing additional Medicare insurance from private insurers. Read the rest of this entry »

Medicare Open Enrollment Is Right Now

Each year, seniors have an opportunity to enroll in Medicare or change existing coverage. In 2013, open enrollment started Oct. 15, 2013 and will end Dec. 7, 2013.

Retirees have an opportunity to consider Medicare plans and ensure they have selected the best plan for their needs.

Visit EasyMedicareChoices.com

An online consumer website is offering people a way to review and compare Medicare Supplement plans. Read the rest of this entry »

Where Should You Retire?

A recent study showed a state-by-state analysis of the best locations for adults 65 and older to settle down.

The healthiest state for seniors was Minnesota followed by Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Iowa.

At the bottom of the list as the unhealthiest state was Mississippi with Oklahoma, Louisiana, West Virginia and Arkansas also at the bottom of the rankings.

What factors contributed to a state’s healthiness for retirees?

The researchers scored 34 measures of senior health; among them:

  • Individual behaviors (smoking, alcohol)
  • Environment (poverty, community programs)
  • Public Policy (available geriatricians, clinical care)

Read the rest of this entry »

Health Care Cost Contributes To Retirement Location

In many national magazines of late, there are special retirement features showcasing everything from places to live, the best this and the best that.

In Money magazine’s 2013 Retirement Guide, it details the top 20 places to live when retired.

The locations were selected via survey response from people 55+ interested in finding a great location to live it up after working for four decades. Imagine all the factors that contribute to making a choice of where to live when considering retirement! Read the rest of this entry »