As a follow-up to last week’s post, we provide greater detail concerning Medicare Part B benefits – along with a reminder to those eligible to enroll NOW!

Acknowledgements for much of this information sourced directly from the Social Security Administration…

“Most people first become eligible for Medicare at age 65, and there is a monthly premium for Medicare Part B. In 2014, the premium for most people is $104.90, the same as it was in 2013. Some high-income individuals pay more than the standard premium. Your Medicare Part B premium also can be higher if you do not enroll when you are first eligible, also known as your initial enrollment period. There also is a Medicare Part B deductible of $147 in 2014.

You can delay your Medicare Part B enrollment without having to pay higher premiums if you are covered under a group health plan based on your own current employment or the current employment of any family member.

You can sign up for Medicare Part B without paying higher premiums:
– In any month you are covered under a group health plan based on your own current employment or the current employment of any family member; or within eight months after your employment or group health plan coverage ends, whichever comes first.

– If you are disabled and working (or you have coverage from a working family member), the same rules apply.

It’s important to note that people who have Medicare coverage are not affected by the Affordable Care Act. Medicare is not a part of the Affordable Care Act’s Health Insurance Marketplace. If you are a Medicare beneficiary, your Medicare benefits are not changing. You do not need to replace your Medicare coverage with Marketplace coverage.”

And finally…some good news (albeit “small”) concerning Social Security benefits. People who receive Social Security or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) will receive a cost of living adjustment in 2014. This year, more than 60 million Americans are receiving a 1.5 percent cost of living adjustment in their monthly benefit payment.

For more information about Medicare Parts A, B, C, and D, visit www.medicare.gov.

– John D. Miller is the owner of Home Care Partners, LLC, a Massachusetts business providing private duty, personalized in-home assistance and companion care services to those needing help in daily activities and household functions. He can be reached at: (781) 378-2164; email: jdmiller@homecarepartners.biz ; or online at: www.homecarepartnersma.com

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