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Many Medicare Beneficiaries Face High Out-of-Pocket Costs for Dental and Hearing Care, Whether in Traditional Medicare or Medicare Advantage

Many Medicare beneficiaries face high annual out-of-pocket costs for dental and hearing care — services that generally aren’t covered in traditional Medicare, but typically are covered by Medicare Advantage plans though the scope and value of these benefits vary, finds a new KFF analysis. The analysis shows that, among beneficiaries…

Dental, Hearing, and Vision Costs and Coverage Among Medicare Beneficiaries in Traditional Medicare and Medicare Advantage

This analysis builds on our prior work – Medicare and Dental Coverage: A Closer Look – by analyzing hearing and vision use, out-of-pocket spending and cost-related barriers to care among Medicare beneficiaries as well as hearing and vision benefits in Medicare Advantage plans. It also incorporates top-level findings from the analysis of dental services to provide a comprehensive profile of dental, hearing, and vision benefits in Medicare.

Potential Savings for Medicare Part D Enrollees Under Proposals to Add a Hard Cap on Out-of-Pocket Spending

Medicare Part D, the outpatient prescription drug benefit for Medicare beneficiaries, provides coverage above a catastrophic threshold for high out-of-pocket drug costs, but there is no cap on total out-of-pocket drug costs that beneficiaries pay each year. Recent legislative proposals would add a cap on out-of-pocket spending under Part D. This analysis focuses on the potential impact of different out-of-pocket spending caps in terms of how many beneficiaries would be affected and how much they could save.

Payments to Medicare Advantage Plans Boosted Medicare Spending by $7 Billion in 2019

The federal government spent $321 more per person for beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans than for those in traditional Medicare in 2019, a gap that amounted to $7 billion in additional spending on the increasingly popular private plans that year, finds a new KFF analysis. The Medicare Advantage spending…

Higher and Faster Growing Spending Per Medicare Advantage Enrollee Adds to Medicare’s Solvency and Affordability Challenges

This analysis finds that Medicare spending for Medicare Advantage enrollees was $321 higher per person in 2019 than if enrollees had instead been coverage by traditional Medicare, leading to an estimated $7 billion in additional spending in 2019. It also examines the implications of expected growth in Medicare Advantage enrollment and payments per enrollee from 2021 to 2029.

How Would Drug Price Negotiation Affect Medicare Part D Premiums?

Proposals to allow the federal government to negotiate prescription drug prices, such as H.R. 3, the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act, aim to lower out-of-pocket drug costs for Medicare beneficiaries and private plan enrollees and achieve savings for Medicare. This data note estimates average premium savings attributable to the negotiations provision of H.R. 3 on a per capita basis for Part D enrollees who pay premiums in dollar amounts and as a share of the base beneficiary premium, based on aggregate premium reductions and baseline premiums projected by Medicare’s actuaries through 2029.

10 FAQs on Prescription Drug Importation

These FAQs discuss recent efforts related to prescription drug importation, the history of this approach, challenges that previous efforts to carry out importation proposals have faced, and stakeholder views.

Medicare and Dental Coverage: A Closer Look

Medicare does not cover routine dental care and about half of Medicare beneficiaries do not have dental coverage. Some beneficiaries have dental coverage through other sources, including Medicare Advantage, but 47% of all beneficiaries have not been to the dentist in the past year and many older adults face high out-of-pocket costs for needed dental care. This brief provides new data on the share of Medicare beneficiaries with dental coverage, the share with a dental visit in the past 12 months, and out-of-pocket spending on dental care. It also takes a closer look at the scope of dental benefits offered to Medicare Advantage enrollees in individual plans in 2021.

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, California.