Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Medicare Premiums Jump

Remember last month when SSA announced the 2022 COLA-maybe not groundbreaking, but a nice "raise" for beneficiaries.  Well, what SSA gave, Medicare takes away, with their announcement regarding the 2022 premium. Alzheimer's drug cited as Medicare premium jumps by $21.60  explains that 

Medicare's “Part B” outpatient premium will jump by $21.60 a month in 2022, one of the largest increases ever. Officials said Friday a new Alzheimer's drug is responsible for about half of that.

The increase guarantees that health care will gobble up a big chunk of the recently announced Social Security cost-of-living allowance, a boost that had worked out to $92 a month for the average retired worker, intended to help cover rising prices for gas and food that are pinching seniors.

The implications reach beyond the cost of the premiums for 2022. "The new Part B premium will be $170.10 a month for 2022, officials said. The jump of $21.60 is the biggest increase ever in dollar terms, although not percentage-wise. As recently as August, the Medicare Trustees’ report had projected a smaller increase of $10 from the current $148.50."

Many thanks to my dear friend, Professor Feeley, for sending me the link to the article.

Here's one thought about it. "The increase in the Part B premium for 2022 is continued evidence that rising drug costs threaten the affordability and sustainability of the Medicare program," said Medicare chief Chiquita Brooks-LaSure in a statement. Officials said the other half of the premium increase is due to the natural growth of the program and adjustments made by Congress last year as the coronavirus pandemic hit."

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