Will the Affordable Care Act Come to the Rescue?
As the major insurance coverage provisions of the Affordable Care Act continue to pick up steam, a recent survey indicates that nearly half of working U.S. adults were uninsured or underinsured at some point in 2012. According to the survey, about 30% of adults between ages 19 and 64 went without health insurance for part or all of 2012, which is nearly 10 million more than the 26% who went without coverage in 2003. An additional 30 million people were considered “underinsured,” which means that, although they had insurance, they also had out-of-pocket costs so high that it was considered to be an obstacle for them. Hopefully, the Affordable Care Act will help to severely reduce these numbers.
NOTE: In the survey mentioned above, “underinsured” was defined as out-of-pocket expenses that reached 10% or more of income (5% or more if income was below 200% of the federal poverty level) or deductibles that were 5% or more of income.Read More
Covering the Medigap
Anyone approaching age 65 who will be enrolled in Medicare Part B should consider shopping for Medicare supplement insurance, popularly known as “Medigap” insurance. These policies, which are sold by private insurance companies, are designed to provide reimbursement for out-of-pocket costs that are not covered by Medicare. Although Medicare covers many health-care costs, patients must still pay Medicare’s coinsurance and deductibles. There are also some medical services that Medicare does not cover. A person’s right to purchase Medigap insurance is guaranteed during a six-month interval that begins on the first day of the month in which he or she is 65 or older and enrolled in Medicare Part B regardless of the condition of his or her health.
NOTE: Medicare Part B is an optional premium-based plan that covers physician services and outpatient hospital care.Read More
Have You Thought About Disability Insurance?
Most breadwinners with family responsibilities do not give disability insurance the same amount of consideration that they give to life insurance. However, heads of households may want to consider that just over one in four of today’s 20-year-olds will become disabled before they retire. This statistic alone should lead them to consider what would happen to their families if they were to lose their ability to work, even for a relatively short period of time. While some companies provide group disability insurance to their employees, the policies may be limited in their coverage. Private disability insurance is available as a supplement to group disability insurance, or it can provide protection for employees with nothing else to rely on.
NOTE: While those working in laborious jobs might be expected to be more vulnerable to injuries that lead to disability, cancer does not care what your job is.Read More
Why Do Patients Sue Their Doctors?
In his book “Blink,” author Malcolm Gladwell delves into the way people make decisions, many of which involve the “adaptive unconscious.” This is the part of the brain that leaps to conclusions that we commonly refer to as “intuitive” or “gut-level” decisions.Read More
Carefully Examine Your Policy’s Home-Care Requirements
Long-term care insurance policies provide coverage for custodial care of Alzheimer’s patients, which typically begins when a physician provides evidence of cognitive impairment or if the patient needs help with at least two daily-living activities.Read More
Are you are dreaming of an early retirement?
Just remember one challanging consideration is what you will do for health insurance after leaving your employer and before Medicare coverage starts. COBRA plans can be very expensive! A good plan is to start funding the HSA or Health Savings Account while you are working. Hopefully your employer offers this plan as part of your group benefits. The benefits of this program are HSA’s are not subject to federal income tax at the time of deposit and the funds you contribute roll over and accumulate year to year if not spent. (As opposed to an employer owned Flexible Savings Accounts where funds are lost if not used in the year) You might also want to evaluate the benefits of a Long Term Care policy to help with the costs of a nursing home, assisted living or home health services. Scott Insurance can help you evaluate these plans for your specific situation, and can also advise on Medicare Supplement plans once you do finally retire!Read More