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Medicare surprise: Drug plan prices touted during open enrollment can rise within a month

As early as three weeks after Medicare’s drug plan enrollment period ends on Dec. 7, insurance plans can change what they charge for prescription drugs - and they can do it repeatedly, leaving recipients in the dark on their monthly out-of-pocket cost.... Read more»

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Experts fear Arizona is not prepared to handle surge in Alzheimer’s cases

Arizona is in the midst of a surge in Alzheimer’s patients that is rising at the fastest rate in the nation, but advocates say there are not enough resources to handle the cases the state has now, much less the extra number of patients that could be coming.... Read more»

Safety violations, resource shortages put Arizona dialysis patients at heightened risk

Since 2019, nearly three-quarters of Arizona’s 130 outpatient dialysis clinics were cited for lapses in protocols designed to keep patients safe - and records show that dialysis companies often negotiate fines from the state for repeat problems down by thousands of dollars.... Read more»

Seeking to shift costs to Medicare, more employers move retirees to Advantage plans

Over the past decade, an increasing number of employers have used the government’s Medicare Advantage program as an alternative to their existing retiree health plan and traditional Medicare coverage - yet details of these plans — and the costs to taxpayers — are largely hidden.... Read more»

A fifth of nursing-home workers remain unvaccinated as deadlines loom

Federal deadlines to vaccinate all health-care workers against COVID-19 are just weeks away, but the most recent federal data show that roughly a fifth of nursing-home employees are not yet fully vaccinated.... Read more»

Free at-home COVID tests to be handed out to Medicare beneficiaries this spring

Starting this spring, Medicare beneficiaries will be able to get up to eight over-the-counter COVID-19 tests per month at no cost.... Read more»

Medicare patients win the right to appeal gap in nursing home coverage

A three-judge federal appeals court panel in Connecticut has likely ended an 11-year fight against a frustrating and confusing rule that left hundreds of thousands of Medicare beneficiaries without coverage for nursing home care, and no way to challenge a denial.... Read more»

Cinco cosas que deberías saber sobre las pruebas caseras 'gratis' para COVID

Las pruebas, así como el uso de máscaras, son para vencer a COVID y restaurar las rutinas normales. Para obtener pruebas más baratas para los estadounidenses, el gobierno federal ahora planea que las compañías de seguros las paguen.... Read more»

5 things to know about ‘free’ at-home COVID tests

Testing, as well as mask-wearing, is an important measure if the country ever hopes to beat COVID, restore normal routines and get the economy running efficiently. To get Americans cheaper tests, the federal government now plans to have insurance companies pay for them.... Read more»

Biden admin orders health insurers to start covering at-home COVID tests

Most Americans with private or group health insurance will have the cost of at-home COVID-19 tests covered by their providers starting Jan. 15, a move that comes as retailers struggle to keep up with demand for at-home tests sold over the counter in pharmacies.... Read more»

Supreme Court will hear challenges to Biden’s vaccine mandates

The Supreme Court agreed to take up challenges to President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandates for large companies and health care workers, consolidating four applications into two cases that will be argued before the justices on Jan. 7. ... Read more»

Challenge to vaccine-or-test mandate could upend already shaky precedent on agency deference

American jurisprudence on vaccine mandates dates back over 100 years, but the Supreme Court will likely focus on a 40-year-old administrative precedent to determine if President Joe Biden can require COVID-19 vaccines and testing for large private businesses. ... Read more»

Biden’s big social spending bill caught in snags in the Senate

President Joe Biden’s giant social and climate spending bill on Thursday night appeared stalled in the U.S. Senate for some time to come, a deep frustration for congressional Democrats who aimed to pass the ambitious package by the Christmas recess. ... Read more»

Senate paves way for vote that would let Democrats raise the debt ceiling

In a unique solution to avoid a default on the country’s debt, the Senate approved a bipartisan plan Thursday that would allow Democrats to raise the debt ceiling without any support from the GOP. ... Read more»

Democrats risk losses in 2022 if they give up on paid leave, advocates say

The Democrats’ “Build Back Better” bill that passed the U.S. House did include four weeks of paid leave -but that provision is at risk of deletion in the Senate due to Sen. Joe Manchin- and a failure to take action could have significant political consequences for Democrats in 2022.... Read more»

Judge blocks federal vaccine mandate for health care workers in 10 states

Enforcement of the Biden administration's vaccine mandate for millions of health care workers was blocked in 10 states on Monday, after a ruling by a federal judge in Missouri.... Read more»

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