Medicare Advantage

Medicare Advantage Plans Have Great Promise But They Are Not Delivering

Medicare Advantage (MA) managed care plans have the potential to vastly improve care for older adults in the US. A fully-integrated health model that combines primary and specialty care, physical therapy, hospital care and even some limited personal supports could improve the quality of life for patients and save the government a substantial amount of money. But increasingly, analysts say [...]

By |2022-06-15T10:18:56-04:00June 15th, 2022|Medicare|0 Comments

A Two-Year Reprieve For Medicare Insolvency Sounds Like Good News. But It Isn’t

The Medicare trustees’ new estimate that the program’s Part A Hospital Insurance (HI) Trust fund will remain solvent for an extra two years—to 2028—sounds like good news. But dig deeper into the 257-page report and the news is grim for the future of Medicare and its 64 million beneficiaries. Headlines from the trustees’ annual report always focus on the depletion [...]

By |2022-06-08T10:22:22-04:00June 8th, 2022|Medicare|0 Comments

Medicare Advantage Plans Get A Big Pay Hike, Offer More Services And Supports For Older Adults

Medicare Advantage managed care plans, which in 2021 covered 26 million enrollees, will get an average 8.5 percent increase in total Medicare payments next year. At the same time, MA plans are rapidly embracing a wide range of social services and supports for older adults living at home. Sometimes called long-term care lite, these benefits range from meal and food [...]

By |2022-04-05T16:26:55-04:00April 5th, 2022|Medicare|0 Comments

Adding Dental, Vision, And Hearing To Traditional Medicare Would Be Expensive, But Important

Congressional Democrats are expected to include a broad expansion of traditional Medicare benefits-- including dental, vision, and hearing—in a $3.5 trillion social spending bill they’ll consider later this year. The move would be the biggest expansion of Medicare since Congress added a drug benefit in 2003 and would go a long way toward improving the health and well-being of millions [...]

By |2021-07-22T10:47:23-04:00July 22nd, 2021|Medicare, Uncategorized|3 Comments

FDA’s Approval Of A New Alzheimer’s Drug Shows What’s Wrong With The Way We Care For Frail Older Adults

FDA’s decision last week to approve a new “Alzheimer’s disease treatment,” and the buzz that surrounds it, is a symptom of all that is wrong with the way we care for frail older adults in the US. Rather than providing the supports that people with chronic conditions desperately need, and that evidence shows works, we prefer to chase butterflies. In [...]

By |2021-06-15T11:54:04-04:00June 15th, 2021|long-term care, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Americans Want Government To Help Them Age At Home, Buttressing Biden’s Medicaid Long-Term Care Agenda

A new public opinion survey shows broad bipartisan backing for more public support for long-term care, especially at home, even as congressional Republicans appear to be lining up against the idea. According a  new survey by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, 63 percent of respondents say government should support programs to help low income people receive supports [...]

By |2021-05-03T17:22:41-04:00May 3rd, 2021|long term care reform|0 Comments

Biden Should Look Beyond Medicaid to Expand Long-Term Care

The Washington Post reports that business lobbyists are quietly trying to kill President Biden’s efforts to increase federal spending on Medicaid home and community-based (HCBS) long-term care services. The reason: The White House wants to fund the $400 billion increase—part of the president’s $2.2 trillion infrastructure spending program-- by raising corporate taxes. And make no mistake, business opposition could sink [...]

By |2021-04-22T14:32:18-04:00April 22nd, 2021|long term care reform, Uncategorized|0 Comments

How Can The US  Fix Long-Term Care In A Post Covid-19 World?

The Covid-19 pandemic has been a catastrophe for frail older adults. More than 170,000 residents and staff of long-term care facilities have died from the virus, and adults over age 65 living in all settings have accounted for about 80 percent of the nation’s deaths, or about 400,000 fatalities. But what lessons have we learned? And how can we build [...]

By |2021-03-10T10:59:12-05:00March 10th, 2021|long term care reform|20 Comments

How To Get Covid-19 Vaccine To Homebound Older Adults

In December, I wrote about how important it is to get the Covid-19 vaccine to millions of homebound older adults, younger people with disabilities,  and their caregivers.  It won’t be easy, but here are some ways to build on existing programs and housing arrangements. People with severe chronic disease and functional or cognitive limitations are extremely vulnerable to severe illness [...]

By |2021-02-01T11:28:59-05:00February 1st, 2021|aging in place|5 Comments

States Must Rapidly Deliver Coronavirus Vaccine To Frail Elders Living At Home

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has put residents and staff of nursing homes and assisted living facilities near the top of the list for receiving a covid-19 vaccine. That is the right call. But public health officials should not forget about the millions of frail older adults living at home who are at risk of dying from [...]

By |2020-12-17T11:15:33-05:00December 17th, 2020|aging in place|9 Comments