2022 Medicare Premiums Post Big Increases

Medicare announced on November 12 that it would apply big rate hikes on Medicare premiums next year. The monthly Part B premium will rise by $21.60, or nearly 15 percent, to $170.10 from $148.50 this year. This increase is more than double the projected $10 boost included in the annual report from…

Medicare Open Enrollment Rewards Homework, So Do It!

Welcome to my annual plea to spend time on Medicare’s annual enrollment process for next year. Beginning Oct. 15 and extending through Dec. 7, you can switch your current Medicare coverage, with no penalties, for plans taking effect on Jan. 1, 2022. I wait each year to do this story until the Kaiser…

Medicare Drug Pricing Deal is Both Modest and Momentous

Viewed through the Democrats’ political lens, the tentative Medicare drug pricing deal announced yesterday was a pale shadow of the tough price-cutting measure staked out by the progressive wing of the party. Viewed in terms of the changes its passage would trigger, it is a big deal. A review of…

Social Security COLA Will Rise 5.9 Percent in 2022

The Social Security Administration announced today (October 13) that its annual Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) will rise by 5.9 percent next year – the largest one-year boost since 1982. The increase will add $92 to the program’s average monthly benefit, which will rise to $1,657 from $1,565. The…

U.S. Drug Prices a Rip-Off, But . . .

As if we needed more evidence, here’s a recent analysis of how much Americans pay for big-ticket drugs and how much money pharmaceutical companies collect in the U.S. compared with their worldwide revenues for these drugs. Manufacturer Drugs Revenues (billions) U.S Share of Total Percent U.S. Rest…

Here’s a Welcome, Fact-Based Guide to Successful Aging

In a world that often seems short on facts and distressingly long on opinions, there’s nothing to beat a solid report from the Society of Actuaries, a group dedicated to fact worshippers! A recent report from the SOA Research Institute provides a solid foundation for many of the common-sense lifestyle…

Part B Premiums Versus the COLA — Updated

Updated to include projected Part A 2022 deductibles  On August 30, trustees for Social Security and Medicare released their massive annual reports on how they fared in 2020, their financial footings, and the outlook for the nation’s primary retirement and health-care programs. The short answer…