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Is the Medicare crisis almost here If you knew a financial reckoning were due in 30 years, would you freak out? Probably not—heck, you might be dead by then. Twenty years? Nah, not really. What about eight years from now? That might get your attention. And that’s where we stand with Medicare, the giant health care program for those 65

Medicare will begin to issue New Medicare ID cards

New Medicare cards start mailing in April 2018   New Medicare cards to start mailing April 2018 The last decade or so we have seen insurers respond to issues with identity theft and regulations imposed by HIPPA by protecting personal information such as social security numbers. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services has been

Fit in 5: Balance

This is a great way for us to stay balanced and keep a strong core throughout our life. These are simple exercises but when done properly and with repetition can help you avoid falls. Get your body in alignment, release tension and improve your balance with this 5-minute routine from celebrity trainer, Joel Harper.

Focused on Better Brain Health

The Genesis program is a 30 day medically based plan with a personalized schedule focusing on nutrition, brain utilization, exercise, stress management, and socialization. Clinical trials show these preventative strategies expand one’s cognitive reserve, delay cognitive decline, and in some cases reverse cognitive complications. After completing the program, you will be able to apply the

BlueCross Marketplace Rates Approved for 2017

BlueCross Marketplace Rates Approved for 2017, but Affordable Care Act (ACA) Uncertainties Remain Yesterday, the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance (TDCI) approved the 62% Marketplace rate increase that we requested in June. We appreciate TDCI’s approval of our rate increase, which aims to close the gap between what we charge our individual members and what we pay for their medical care. Other insurance carriers providing Marketplace plans in our state also earned approval for significant rate increases.

Driving mobility affects seniors

Driving Mobility affects seniors Driving Mobility Affects Seniors’ Social Lives and Overall Health Thursday, July 28th, 2016 According to a recent study, elderly drivers who stop driving and have no transportation alternatives become less socially active and risk isolation. This can lead to a decline in both physical and mental health. Teja Pristavec, a sociology

Short term care insurance

Short term care insurance information National Advisory Center for Short-Term Care Information consumer informational video explains how short-term care insurance can benefit older Americans.      

Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015

Medicare reauthorization of 2015 What Does the Medicare “Doc Fix” Bill Do? The “doc fix” bill, officially called the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA): •Replaces the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula that cuts Medicare doctors pay in theory, but has been pushed off by 17 short-term patches since 2002 to avoid doctors refusing to take Medicare patients. Medicare doctors would have seen a 21% cut in April of 2015 if the fix wasn’t passed. •Makes the qualifying individual (QI) program that subsidizes Medicare Part B premiums for beneficiaries who earn 120% to 135% of federal poverty levelpermanent. •Extends the Medicare Advantage special needs plans (SNPs) through the end of 2018. •Extends the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for two years (for a total of 4 more years, it was already extended for 2). •Removes social security numbers from newly issued Medicare cards by April 16, 2019 with new cards issued no more than four years later. •Cuts Medicare spending by: •◦Decreasing funding to supplemental Medicare plans specifically reducing spending on “first dollar” coverage of supplemental Medigap plans enjoyed by some from 2020 onward (if you have a Medigap plan that does this you can keep it, but new ones wont be sold). ◦Requiring higher premiums for seniors who make more than $133,500 to pay more for Medicare coverage starting in 2018. ◦Implementing new quality measures that follow that ACA’s lead of rewarding quality care over quantity.

Health insurance premiums increasing for 2017

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee has served the health coverage needs of Tennesseans for over 70 years and our mission is to provide peace of mind through better health. The creation of the Marketplace and the Affordable Care Act made health insurance plans available to more people and we fully participated, as we believed this supported our mission. Today over 200,000 Tennesseans count on BlueCross for their Marketplace coverage. Along with the entire insurance industry, we are still struggling with how to price accurately for these members. Even after three years, BlueCross continues to pay out far more in claims than is being collected in premiums for this line of business. In 2014 and 2015, we lost over $300 million on these plans and expect to lose well over $100 million in 2016.

Price increase on Medications

Major drug companies took hefty price increases in the U.S., in some cases more than doubling listed charges, for widely used medications over the past five years, a Reuters analysis of proprietary data found. Prices for four of the nation's top 10 drugs increased more than 100 percent since 2011, Reuters found. Six others went up more than 50 percent. Together, the price increases on drugs for arthritis, high cholesterol, asthma and other common problems added billions in costs for consumers, employers and government health programs