The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid has released data on 2015 Medicare premiums, deductibles and coinsurance amounts. Any change in these amounts can either directly or indirectly affect your healthcare costs.
The good news is Medicare Part B premiums will remain unchanged from 2014. The only way you will see an increase in your Part B premiums this year is if your income has gone up and you have reached a level that requires higher monthly premiums. Part B premiums amount to a progressive tax. The table below details premiums at varying income levels for both individuals and those couples filing jointly.
|Individual tax return income:||Joint tax return income:||Part B premium income related monthly adjusted amount||Total monthly Part B premium|
|Less than or equal to $85,000||Less than or equal to $170,000||$0.00||$104.90|
|$85,000 to $107,000||$170,000 to $214,000||$42.00||$146.90|
|$107,000 to $160,000||$214,000 to $320,000||$62.90||$209.80|
|$160,000 – $214,000||$320,000 to $428,000||$62.90||$272.70|
|Greater than $214,000||Greater than $428,000||$63.00||$335.70|
Deductible and coinsurance changes
The Part A deductible will increase $19 in 2015 to $1,260. The Part A deductible must be paid in the event that you are hospitalized. If you are covered by Original Medicare only, this will be your responsibility. If you have Medicare and a Medicare supplement policy, your supplement will pick up this increase, although if you have Plans K, L or M you will feel this increase as those plans only pay a percentage of the Part A deductible. See the Medigap Benefits Chart.
Daily coinsurance amounts if you are hospitalized will also increase in 2015. The chart below details the changes.
|Part A Hospital Deductible||$1,216||$1,260|
|In-patient days 61 – 90||$304 per day||$315 per day|
|In-patient days 90+||$608per day||$630 per day|
|Part B Deductible||$147||$147|
|Skilled Nursing Care Days 21-100||$152 per day||$157.50 per day|
Even if your Medicare supplement policy will cover these increased expenses you should keep in mind that any additional cost that is incurred by the insurance company will be another reason for potential rate increases. The same holds true for Medicare Advantage Plans. Advantage Plans must include all Part A and Part B benefits and as you see increases in Medicare costs you will eventually see increases in monthly premiums, higher co-payments or coinsurance and possibly a decrease in benefits.
In addition to these changes, the Part A premium will decrease by $19 in 2015. But… before you start the celebration you should know that less than 1% of Medicare beneficiaries are required to pay the Part A premium.
2015 Medicare premiums and deductible changes for 2015 are not the only news-worthy items that will affect you financially. The Social Security cost of living increase is expected to be 1.7% in 2015, slightly more than the 1.5% last year but well below the reported inflation rate. The last significant increase in Social Security occurred in 2009 when benefits increased 5.8%.