What You Need To Know About Medicare Changes In 2020
- Monthly Medicare Part A premiums for 2020 are $458 for those required to pay. Part A deductibles have also increased for hospital stays.
- The standard premium for Medicare Part B for 2020 is $144.60 per month. Part B deductibles are $198.
- There is no longer a Part D “donut hole” for brand-name and generic prescription drugs.
- Newly-eligible Medicare recipients will no longer be able to enroll in Medicare Supplement Plan C or Plan F.
- The Medicare Plan Finder was upgraded for the first time in a decade this year.
Medicare changes in 2020 have affected several key areas, including Part A and B costs, prescription drug coverage, and Medicare Supplement plan options. Whether you are new to Medicare or have been enrolled for years, read on to discover how these changes may directly impact your healthcare plan.
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Have Part A Premiums or Deductibles Changed?
Among the 2020 Medicare changes were increases in Part A premiums, deductibles, and coinsurance.
Only about 1 percent of Medicare beneficiaries pay a Part A premium, which increased from $437 each month in 2019 to $458 each month in 2020. This figure applies to those who have fewer than 30 quarters (7.5 years) of work history.
For those with more than 30 quarters, but fewer than 40 (10 years), premiums are now $252 each month, up from $240 per month in 2019.
Part A deductibles, which cover the first 60 days you are in the hospital, have also gone up. If you are admitted to the hospital this year, it will cost you $1,408, up from $1,364 in 2019. Days 61 through 90 of hospitalization will run you $352 per day, up from $341 in 2019.
Medicare Advantage plans have been gaining in popularity in recent years as a comprehensive alternative to Original Medicare.
Have Part B Premiums and Deductibles Increased?
The standard premium for Part B plans also changed this year, increasing from $135.50 per month in 2019 to $144.60 per month in 2020. Some Medicare recipients may pay less than this full amount depending on their Social Security cost of living adjustment (COLA). Other individuals may be charged above the standard premium amount due to income-adjusted surcharges.
Part B deductibles have also increased to $198 in 2020. This is up significantly from $185 in 2019 and $183 in 2017 and 2018. This change was made to reduce costs to Medicare, as it encourages beneficiaries to only go to the doctor for medically necessary services or standard preventive care.
Are There Any Changes to Medicare Advantage Premiums?
Medicare Advantage plans have been gaining in popularity in recent years as a comprehensive alternative to Original Medicare (Parts A and B). Average premiums for Medicare Advantage plans in 2020 are $23 per month.
This cost is in addition to the Part B premiums, which you still need to pay. Medicare Advantage premiums and other costs vary according to the health insurance carrier, specific coverage, and other factors.
What Is Happening to the Part D Donut Hole?
The Medicare “donut hole” is the name given to the time when you and your Part D plan have spent the maximum amount on prescription drugs, making you responsible for all out-of-pocket costs up to a yearly limit.
However, as of 2020, there no longer is a donut hole for brand-name or generic drugs after the Affordable Care Act, which went into effect in 2012, took measures to slowly close the donut hole.
In the past, Medicare was paying 56 percent of covered brand-name prescription medication costs during the donut hole stage, leaving you responsible for the remaining 44 percent. In 2020, the amount you pay has been reduced to 25 percent. down from 37 percent in 2019. It is a good idea to check with your doctor or pharmacist to make sure your medications qualify for this benefit.
Medicare Supplement Plans C and F is no longer be available for those who became eligible for Medicare on or after January 1, 2020
Can You Still Purchase Medigap Plans C and F?
Medicare Supplement insurance, or Medigap, has also experienced changes in 2020. Medicare Supplement Plans C and F is no longer be available for those who became eligible for Medicare on or after January 1, 2020. If you are unsure about your exact eligibility date, you can easily find that information listed on your Medicare card.
If you are already enrolled in Plan C or F, you can rest easy. You will remain enrolled, as the above time window restrictions are only for newly-eligible Medicare beneficiaries. Additionally, if you were eligible for Medicare before the cutoff date, you are still able to enroll in these plans now, or in the future.
For this reason, it is always a good idea to compare Medigap plans occasionally to ensure your current plan is the best one to meet your financial needs.
How Has the Medicare Plan Finder Tool Been Improved?
There also have been changes to the Medicare Plan Finder tool. This helpful online tool serves as a guide for those enrolling in Medicare.
With this new Plan Finder, you can compare plans as you shop in order to find the Medicare plan that best fits your individual needs.