Can Employers Pay Medicare Premiums for Active Employees?

Companies with fewer than 20 employees that offer group health coverage that pays secondary to Medicare (those not subject to the MSP rules) may be able to pay for the Medicare Part B, Part D, and Medicare Supplement Insurance premiums for their active employees. This is known as a Medicare Premium Reimbursement Arrangement. However, this is not an option for companies with 20 or more workers that are subject to the Medicare Secondary Payer provisions. All companies, regardless of size, can pay the health insurance or Medicare premiums for their retired employees, but no company can payfor individual health insurance coverage for their active employees . Our best practice: A… Read More

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What is Medicare?

With Open Enrollment for Medicare in full swing, it’s important to know your benefits and how they work together. Here is an easy to understand article so you fully understand Medicare’s Parts  in order to customize coverage that works for you! Here at Total Benefit Solutions, Inc we have highly trained and certified Medicare Enrollment Specialists to help you each step along the way. If your Medicare options confuse you, or you just want the piece of mind of having a Broker review your needs prior to selecting a plan, feel free to reach out to us at 215-355-2121! You only have until December 7th to choose a plan for… Read More

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Common Questions: Rules For Your HSA After Becoming Medicare Eligible

Medicare and Your HSA In 2017, over 22 million Americans have a Health Savings Account. Each year that number goes higher and higher as High Deductible Plans become more popular with Individuals and Employers. Once you turn 65 and enroll in Medicare, you can no longer open an HSA or deposit money into it, but what if you already had one with a balance? You don’t have to worry about a “Use It Or Lose It” clause. That money can still be used towards out-of-pocket costs! Here are some very common questions about how you can continue to benefit from your HSA and why keeping funds in it for your… Read More

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Medicare Part D Notification Requirements

Employers sponsoring a group health plan with prescription drug benefits are required to notify their Medicare-eligible participants and beneficiaries as to whether the drug coverage provided under the plan is “creditable” or “non-creditable” prior to October 15th, 2018. Please follow this link for more information:   Medicare Part D Notification Requirements       As always, if you have any questions or concerns about this notification or your specific policy, please contact us at 215-355-2121

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The History of Medicare

  A brief history of Medicare in America Landmark social program now covers 58.5 million Americans By Steve Anderson Discussion about a national health insurance system for Americans goes all the way back to the days of President Teddy Roosevelt, whose platform included health insurance when he ran for president in 1912. But the idea for a national health plan didn’t gain steam until it was pushed by U.S. President Harry S Truman.On November 19, 1945, seven months into his presidency, Truman sent a message to Congress, calling for the creation of a national health insurance fund, open to all Americans. The plan Truman envisioned would provide health coverage to individuals, paying for such typical expenses… Read More

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Prevent Osteoporosis with Screenings

10 Facts About Osteoporosis By Kathleen Hall This silent disease significantly raises your risk for fractures and disability. 1. Losing bone density is a normal part of aging. We reach peak bone mass between ages 25 and 30, and then slowly lose begin to start losing bone mass at age 40. For women, reduced levels of estrogen after menopause accelerate bone density loss. “Women lose 1.5 to 2 percent of their bone density per year in the first 10 years after menopause,” says Laura Ryan, MD, clinical associate professor of medicine in the division of endocrinology, diabetes, and metabolism at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus. 2. You don’t lose… Read More

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Your New Medicare Card is on the way! Watch out for scams!

Watch out for scams Your new Medicare card is on the way, so if someone calls and says you need to give them your personal information or money to get the new card, hang up! It’s a scam. Medicare will never call uninvited and ask for personal information or money for you to get your new Medicare Number and card. Learn what to do if you get a suspicious call like this. If you haven’t gotten your new Medicare card yet, don’t worry. Mailing cards to each group of states takes at least a month, so you might get your card at a different time than friends or neighbors in your area.… Read More

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Medicare Part D Donut Hole Closing Sooner!

Did you know? The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 moved up the date for closing the so-called donut hole for brand name drugs to 2019. It was previously 2020. For 2019 and every year after, the beneficiary cost sharing for brand name drugs after the initial coverage limit is 25% — the same as after the deductible and before the initial coverage limit. In 2020, the beneficiary cost sharing for generic drugs will also be 25%. Ask your Total Benefit Solutions Account Manager for more information at (215)355-2121. Total Benefit Solutions Inc. is your Medicare health insurance specialist! We work for your benefit!

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CMS Expands the Extension of Needed Relief for Marketplace Enrollees Who Missed Medicare Enrollment

CMS is offering assistance to certain individuals enrolled in both Medicare Part A (and/or Part C) and the Exchange for individuals and families to drop their Exchange coverage and enroll in Part B without penalty. Further, CMS is offering assistance to certain individuals who dropped or lost their coverage from the Exchange and are paying a Part B late enrollment penalty from their subsequent enrollment into Part B. These eligible individuals can have their penalty reduced. Individuals can apply for the special enrollment and reduction in late enrollment penalties during a limited time – it is available now and ends September 30, 2018 Read Blog Post from MedicareRights.org CMS SHIP… Read More

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Four Stages of Medicare Part D

  It’s easy to see why Many people are confused by the Medicare part D plan coverage deductibles, limits and the donut hole. We have provided this graphic for you, our clients and friends to make it a little easier to see in a pie chart. Click the link below to download this graphic bulletin. 2018 Four Stages Of Medicare Part D   Want to compare part D plans in your area quickly? Click here   Have more questions? Call us today at (215)355-2121.

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Your Medicare Card Is Changing!

  The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) of 2015 requires that Social Security Number-based Health Insurance Claim Numbers (HICN) be removed from Medicare cards by April 2019; this is in an effort to lessen the current risk of beneficiary medical identity theft. A unique Medicare number, called the Medicare Beneficiary Identifier or MBI, will replace the current HICN. Beginning in April 2018, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will begin the process of mailing new Medicare cards and will meet the statutory deadline for replacing all cards by April 2019. Educational Resources:  CMS Transition to New Medicare Numbers and Cards – Fact Sheet CMS Website –… Read More

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Medicare Part D CMS Notification Reminder

  Employers sponsoring a group health plan need to report information on the creditable status of the plan’s prescription drug coverage to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). In order to provide this information, employers must access CMS’s online reporting system at: https://www.cms.gov/Medicare/Prescription-Drug-coverage/CreditableCoverage/CCDisclosureForm.html   Click here to download the complete bulletin As always please contact you Total Benefit Solutions, Inc. account manager at (215)355-2121 if you have any additional questions or concerns.          

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CMS publishes updated 2018 Medicare cost-sharing amounts

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently published updated cost-sharing amounts for 2018 which are outlined below. 2018 Medicare Costs at a Glance Standard Part B Premium Most people pay $134 each month Medicare Part B deductible (Medical deductible) $183 per year Medicare Part A deductible (Hospital deductible) $1,340 for each benefit period Beneficiaries will pay $134 (or higher depending on income) if they: • Enroll in Part B for the first time in 2018, or • Are directly billed for their Part B premium, or • Are dually eligible for Medicaid and have their premium paid by state Medicaid agencies pay an income-related premium Some beneficiaries who were held… Read More

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Compare Medicare Plans in Your Area in real time!

  With Medicareful you can search and compare Medicare health plans at your own convenience, but with an expert nearby at Total Benefit Solutions Inc to help guide you along the way. Log in today and see for yourself! http://www.medicareful.com/totalbenefitsolutions

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Humana and Tenet have reached a new network agreement

Humana and Tenet have reached a new network agreement Humana is pleased to announce we have signed a new agreement, effective June 1, 2017, that allows Humana commercial, Medicare Advantage, Medicaid, and individual exchange health plan members to receive in-network care at Tenet hospitals, hospital-affiliated outpatient centers, and with Tenet physicians. We are currently in the process of loading Tenet providers to all applicable systems. There may be a delay in providers appearing in Physician Finder even though they are participating. For the best possible member experience, as always, we advise the member to check Physician Finder before seeking non-emergent care from a provider in order to help avoid any… Read More

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Compliance Bulletin & Reform Center

Health Care Compliance and Reform Education Center A fundamental change in the way the United States handles health care has arrived. Benefit rules and coverage change faster today than they used to in ten years! Our Compliance and Health Reform Education Center is where we will keep a copy of our health care reform bulletins throughout the year, in an easy  to view format where you can download a brief summary or watch a short informative video. Click here to visit totalbenefitscomply.com Please contact your Total Benefit Solutions account manager at (215)355-2121 if you have any further questions.  

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MEDICARE PART D: CMS NOTIFICATION REMINDER

Employers sponsoring a group health plan need to report information on the creditable status of the plan’s prescription drug coverage to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Watch a video overview   Download a bulletin

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2016 Compliance Year In Review Digest

2016 Compliance Year In Review Digest A complete digest of all our compliance bulletins for the entire year of 2016 from our business partners at Emerson Reid. A handy guide to all of the year’s updates and changes all in one place. Download your copy now and keep it for future reference.   Click to Download Compliance Digest 2016 Year in Review     As always please contact your Total Benefit Solutions Account Manager at (215)355-2121 if you have any questions or concerns.

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Total Benefit Solutions participating in CVS Retail Locations During Medicare Open Enrollment

Total Benefit Solutions is pleased to announce that we are participating in the Independence Blue Cross Medicare/ CVS Pharmacy retail program for the upcoming open enrollment period. What this means to our clients is that we will be on site at our local CVS Pharmacy during the AEP. Starting on Saturday October 15th and continuing through open enrollment we will be on site nearly each  Monday, Wednesday and Friday at the CVS Pharmacy in Feasterville from Noon to 2 PM each day. Please feel free to stop in without an appointment to get your questions answered and pick up your 2017 plan information from Independence Blue Cross.   We will… Read More

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Reminder to Distribute Creditable Coverage Notice

  Employers who sponsor a group health plan with prescription drug benefits are required to notify their Medicare-eligible participants and beneficiaries as to whether the drug coverage provided under the plan is “creditable” or “non-creditable.” This notification must be provided prior to October 15th each year. Download medicare-part-d-reminder-to-distribute-creditable-coverage-notice-

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Original Medicare: Did You Know?

Many Medicare beneficiaries are unaware that original Medicare coverage has significant deductibles and co-pays. Part A helps cover medically necessary inpatient care in hospitals. In 2016, for each benefit period (typically 60 days as defined by Medicare) in a year, beneficiaries pay: $1,288 deductible and no coinsurance for a stay of up to 60 days $322 coinsurance per day for days 61-90 of a hospital stay $644 coinsurance per “lifetime reserve day” after day 90 each benefit period (up to 60 days over your lifetime) All costs for each inpatient day beyond 150 days   At Total Benefit Solutions, Inc we specialize in Medigap programs that are affordable and cover most or… Read More

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Did You Know About Medicare’s Preventative Services?

Medicare pays for many preventive services to keep you healthy. Preventive services can find health problems early, when treatment works best, and can keep you from getting certain diseases. Preventive services include exams, shots, lab tests, and screenings. They also include programs for health monitoring, and counseling and education to help you take care of your own health. The Affordable Care Act makes many improvements to Medicare. If you have Original Medicare, you can get a yearly “Wellness” visit and many other covered preventive services! Click here to download Medicare’s Preventative Services Guide Click below to watch a video from Medicare about the preventative services benefits.

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Now Available: Health Advocate Member Advocacy

Total Benefit Solutions clients can now take advantage of enrolling on Health Advocate as a group or as an individual/ family! It’s part of our Benefit Aid packages and it’s so easy you can enroll today by clicking here or ask your Total Benefit Solutions account manager at (215)355-2121 for more information. This video will tell you all about the benefits of Health Advocate!  

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Medicare and Employer Coverage

From the Medicare Rights Center download this excellent Q&A about Medicare Coverage, the guidelines and how it may or may not integrate with employer coverage. Part-2-QA-Current-Employer-Insurance Have more questions about Medicare and your employer coverage? Call your Total Benefit Solutions, Inc account manager today at (215)355-2121.           Learn more on Medicare Interactive.

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