It's also a common tendency to overestimate how much you will get from Social Security, according to a survey by the Nationwide Retirement Institute. About 30% of future retirees in the survey anticipated collecting more than they are likely to receive, saying they expected to get ,628 per month in Social Security benefits on average, but current retirees are receiving an average of ,257 per month. That gap is significant because 55% of those surveyed said that Social Security benefits would be their main source of income in retirement..The CMS announced new streamlined payment mechanisms for healthcare provider transactions this week. Doctors, hospitals, health plans, and states will all see reduced administrative costs under CMS' larger "administrative simplification" initiative..Compare generic costs: You sometimes pay more for common generics using your drug plan, than you would simply by visiting a pharmacy with generic program. Compare the costs first. If the generic saves you money over your normal co-pay, put your drug plan card away and shop at the discount pharmacy. Save your coverage for more expensive prescriptions..When it comes to strengthening Social Security's finances, Members of Congress only have two choices - to cut spending on benefits, or increase program revenues. Typically in the past, the focus has been on proposals that would cut benefits rather than raising revenues. Proponents of cuts argue that benefits must be cut because Social Security is insolvent as currently structured. They point to the fact that there are fewer workers to provide payroll tax revenues for swelling number of retirees..This week, lawmakers in the House and Senate remained in their home states and districts to continue the holiday recess. They are expected to return to Capitol Hill on Tuesday, July 10th. In the meantime, many Members of Congress will be attending local events and hosting town hall meetings around the country..Social Security currently determines initial retirement benefits based on all earnings, even when individuals were working without legal authorization under stolen or fake Social Security numbers..How would this compare with the "senior" CPI, the Consumer Price Index for the Elderly ? Estimates for TSCL indicate that if the CPI-E were to be used to determine the COLA for 2017 the COLA would be 1.7% - 1.1% higher than COLAs under the CPI-W, but federal poverty levels will rise as well..Calling it an "economic imperative," President Obama continues to call for comprehensive immigration reform that would provide a path to legal status for illegal immigrants. A day after the President outlined his plan in a speech on the border with Mexico, immigration reform legislation known as the "DREAM Act" was reintroduced in the Senate..June 2007

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Get the provider's name and any identifying number. If the agent asks "Who am I speaking with?" answer with your own question. First ask the caller for the name of their company and the phone number, "in case you get cut off." You can give a first name but avoid giving out any actual personal information like your Social Security or Medicare number, full name, date of birth and address..annual "wellness" exam and you pay nothing, if your doctor "accepts assignment".With Medicare and other insurers scrambling to control costs, "observation stays" in the hospital have become a loophole that could leave you footing the bill for thousands in uncovered costs. Your hospital status - whether you are an inpatient or an outpatient - makes a huge difference in how much you will have to pay for hospital services like X-rays, drugs and lab tests. But figuring out whether you are an inpatient or outpatient, believe it or not, isn't always clear. … Continued

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In 2016 the COLA was zero and Part B premiums rose by 16.1 percent. In 2017 the COLA was just 0.3 percentage point, and Part B premiums rose by 10 percent. "Those premium spikes were due in large part to the cost-shifting effect created when no COLA was payable," Johnson notes..By Jamie McMillen, TSCL Legislative Assistant.Better Donut Hole Coverage - Higher Taxes Ahead … Continued

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