Now and then: A look at Medicare — 5 things to know

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Robert Quinlan, managing member of Quinlan Care LCC, explained the differences between Medicare now and 50 years ago, according to Fox Business.

Here are five things to know:

1. Medicare only covered physician and hospital visits 50 years ago. Medicare presently covers four medical-related services. It covers:

  • Part A pays for hospital stays, home care, caring in a nursing home and for hospice care.
  • Part B pays for physician visits (covers 80 percent), lab fees and outpatient equipment.
  • Part C is an alternative plan called Medicare Advantage plans, where physicians and hospitals are in network.
  • Part D covers an outside-a-hospital stay.

2. Individuals need to examine the Medicare's mandated "Your Explanation of Benefits" statement to limit medical fraud and save taxpayer dollars.

3. The Affordable Care Act added more preventive care services and a wellness exam for Medicare beneficiaries with no out-of-pocket expense. It also cut out government reimbursements to hospitals, nursing homes, home care agencies and private insurers that run the Medicare Advantage plans.

4. Medicare faces challenges ahead as the government and private analysts claimed they will cease paying hospital bills after 2030.

5. Some proposals to ensure Medicare benefits are available in the future include raising the age to 67 to become eligible for Medicare, increasing the current payroll tax to increase revenue support, substantially reducing healthcare fraud and changing Medicare to a defined contribution. For more proposals, click here.


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