To learn how much the COLA cuts would cost you, try TSCL's "chained" COLA calculator..Two Ways and Means Subcommittees held hearings on reforming Medicare and Social Security this week. On Tuesday, the Health Subcommittee heard from a panel of experts on Medicare reform, and on Thursday, the Social Security Subcommittee met to discuss potential changes to the program..ROTH IRAs require that you take distributions by age 70 and a half or pay a.It's about time. At the time of its passage, the Affordable Care Act, was labeled a "Medicare" tax and sold to the public that way. Now it is needed by the Medicare Part A Hospital Insurance Trust Fund. Part A is less than five years from insolvency and faces an estimated 5 billion funding gap over the next ten years. The Joint Committee on Taxation estimates that this tax will raise approximately .5 billion in revenue in 2021 alone..Congress is under intense pressure from numerous directions to get rising debt under control. The Congressional Budget Office further warned that growing interest costs on the debt would restrict our elected lawmakers ability to use tax and spending policies to respond to economic downturns or financial crises. And that in turn would increase the probably of a sudden fiscal crisis, in which the government would lose its ability to borrow at affordable rates..Totalization agreements allow workers who divide their careers between two countries to combine earnings credits under both systems in order to qualify for benefits. The U.S. currently has 24 such agreements, most with nations having economies similar to our own. What makes the agreement with Mexico so controversial are the millions of Mexicans working in this country without legal authorization..This week, TSCL announced its support for the Improving Care for Vulnerable Older Citizens through Workforce Advancement Act, which was introduced by Sen. Bob Casey in the Senate, and by Rep. Matt Cartwright in the House. If signed into law, the bill would create six different demonstration projects that would focus on the coordination of care for elderly patients with multiple chronic illnesses. It would put Direct Care Workers such as nursing assistants, home health aides, or personal care aides in advanced roles, and it would test and evaluate different models of care coordination..Without legislation to remedy this flaw in the benefit formula, the reduction to the Social Security retirement benefits of these 4 million people would be permanent. Assuming that benefits would be reduced by 9.1%, a calculation for TSCL indicates that a 62 - year old with middle-earnings who retired in 2020 would typically expect a benefit of ,565 at full retirement age, but now would only receive ,423 instead. Over the course of a 25-year retirement, or by the time these individuals reach 87, the total loss of retirement income from expected Social Security benefits would be more than ,000..A widely-discussed plan to reduce the federal deficit would use a slower-growing consumer price index, known as the "chained" CPI, to calculate the annual cost-of-living adjustment. The proposal, often referred to as "chaining" the COLA, would not be the first time the government has tweaked the inflation index to cut government spending on benefit programs

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Yet in deficit reduction negotiations over the past two years, both President Obama and Congressional budget negotiators proposed cutting the growth in annual cost–of–living adjustments and several Medicare measures that would increase beneficiaries' out-of-pocket costs, like higher deductibles, and new co-pays, over the same time. "Making beneficiaries pay more for their Medicare, with less income, simply isn't feasible for a large percentage of today's older Americans," says Cates. "TSCL believes that Congressional candidates could face pushback from concerned senior voters in upcoming elections," he adds..After Surgery What Can I Do About Unexpected Bills?.It also depends on the willingness of the American people to get the vaccine shot. Right now, there seems to be a reluctance among people because of, among other things, the uncertainty about the safety of a vaccine that has been rushed to market. It is a special concern for seniors because they do not often respond as well to medicines, including vaccines, as younger people do. … Continued

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Senator Richard Blumenthal introduced S. 269 on January 30, 201It has since been referred to the Committee on Finance..Medicare costs take a significant portion of retirees' Social Security benefits. A survey conducted by The Senior Citizens League found that more than 51 percent of survey participants report spending at least 6 per month on total healthcare costs and more than one in- five spend ,000 or more per month..Efforts are quietly underway to lay the groundwork for a far-reaching fiscal deal that involves Social Security cost-of-living adjustments and Medicare benefits. White House officials and Senate Republicans have met in a series of private sessions in recent months. In his fiscal year 2014 budget, President Obama proposed reducing the growth in COLAs as well as raising Medicare premiums, reducing benefits of higher income seniors and increasing the Medicare eligibility age. Everything is still on the table, the pressure point being the debt limit. The government is expected to hit the debt limit ceiling the statutory borrowing limit - sometime this fall. … Continued

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