News & Announcements

The Inflation Reduction Act and Understanding the Impact on Group Medicare Plans

Posted:August 18, 2022

The Inflation Reduction Act and Understanding the Impact on Group Medicare Plans By: John P. Dulczak This week, President Joe Biden signed The Inflation Reduction Act into law. Based on the initial review of the prescription drug provisions, this is an incredibly positive development for Medicare retirees. Not only will it reduce the prescription drug…

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CMS Unveils More User-Friendly Medicare Website

Posted:May 18, 2022

New Medicare.gov will incorporate public feedback and make it easier to compare, choose, and understand Medicare coverage. Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) unveiled several updates to the Medicare.gov website that make it easier, for millions of people who use it, to navigate and access information to compare and select health and drug coverage…

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Medicare Will Only Cover Aduhelm for Alzheimer’s Patients in Clinical Trials

Posted:April 14, 2022

Medicare announced Thursday that it will limit its coverage of the pricey new drug Aduhelm to Alzheimer’s patients enrolled in clinical trials of the drug. Approved amid controversy last year by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the latest decision was meant to protect patients while gathering more clinical data on whether the medication actually helps…

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CMS Updates Medicare Payment Policies for Inpatient Rehabilitation Facilities

Posted:August 5, 2020

Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is finalizing a Medicare payment rule that further advances our efforts to strengthen the Medicare program by better aligning payments for inpatient rehabilitation facilities. Inpatient Rehabilitation Facilities The final rule updates Medicare payment policies and rates for facilities under the Inpatient Rehabilitation Facility Prospective Payment System…

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Coronavirus (COVID 19) Announcement

Posted:March 19, 2020

We would like all of our clients to know that there will be no disruption of services for you or your retired members. Retiree First has contingency plans in place to allow for our team to work remotely, in a safe environment, and still deliver the same services & help you and your members have…

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Plan year 2020 and 2021 Medicare enrollment dates at a glance

Posted:January 24, 2020

A guide to the most important dates for enrolling in – or changing – Medicare coverage Medicare 2020 and 2021 enrollment dates: Key takeaways The plan-year 2020 Medicare open enrollment period has ended. The next open enrollment period will run from October 15, 2020 to December 7, 2020, for coverage effective in 2021. The annual five-star…

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2020 MEDICARE PARTS A & B PREMIUMS AND DEDUCTIBLES

Posted:November 19, 2019

On November 8, 2019, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the 2020 premiums, deductibles, and coinsurance amounts for the Medicare Part A and Part B programs. Medicare Part B Premiums/Deductibles Medicare Part B covers physician services, outpatient hospital services, certain home health services, durable medical equipment, and certain other medical and health…

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CMS Proposes to cover Acupuncture for Chronic Low Back Pain for Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in approved studies

Posted:August 16, 2019

Today the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed to cover acupuncture for Medicare patients with chronic low back pain who are enrolled participants either in clinical trials sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) or in CMS-approved studies.  Currently, acupuncture is non-covered by Medicare.  CMS conducted evidence reviews to inform today’s proposal, and…

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CMS Expands Coverage of Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring (ABPM)

Posted:July 25, 2019

CMS Expands Coverage of Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring (ABPM) Decision increases access by extending Medicare coverage to additional diagnostic applications   Today the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) finalized its national coverage policy for Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring (ABPM).  ABPM is a non-invasive diagnostic test that uses a device to track blood pressure over…

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Medicare Launches App to Help Beneficiaries Find Out What’s Covered

Posted:June 11, 2019

At the doctor’s office and want to know if a procedure is covered by Medicare? There is an app for that. Medicare has launched a free app that gives beneficiaries a quick way to see whether the program covers a specific medical item or service. The “What’s Covered” app allows you to search or browse…

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