Be still the FEHBlog’s beating heart

A mere six days before the beginning of the Medicare Open Enrollment period, CMS announced Medicare Part A and B premium, deductibles, and hospital copayment amounts for 2015 today. 

Medicare Part B base and income adjusted premiums and the calendar year deductible will remain unchanged for 2015. The monthly base premium and the calendar year deductible are $104.90 and $147, respectively.

There are “modest” changes in Medicare Part A:

The Medicare Part A deductible that beneficiaries pay when admitted to the hospital will be $1,260 in 2015, a modest increase of $44 from this year’s $1,216 deductible.  The Part A deductible covers beneficiaries’ share of costs for the first 60 days of Medicare-covered inpatient hospital care in a benefit period. Beneficiaries must pay an additional $315 per day for days 61 through 90 in 2015, and $630 per day for hospital stays beyond the 90th day.
For beneficiaries in skilled nursing facilities, the daily co-insurance for days 21 through 100 in a benefit period will be $157.50 in 2015, compared to $152.00 in 2014.

These Medicare changes are relevant to the FEHBP because many FEHBP members also have Medicare coverage and FEHB plans are obligated to coordinate their benefits with Medicare.

Also this week, CMS released a new user guide for group health plans, including FEHB plans, required to report certain enrollee information to CMS for Medicare COB purposes, colloquially known as Section 111 reporting.