2019 Medicare premiums, deductibles will see minuscule increases


 

 

Wealthier retirees will see more substantial increases to Part B premiums, which are based off retirees’ income. About 5 percent of Part B enrollees are affected by income-related monthly adjustment amounts, which can be seen below. (Photo: Shutterstock)

Premiums and deductibles on Medicare plans will see only nominal increases for most beneficiaries in 2019, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Individual enrollees and couples in Part B plans that make less than $85,000 and $170,000, respectively, will see a standard monthly premium increase of $1.50 to $135.50.

Wealthier retirees will see more substantial increases to Part B premiums, which are based off retirees’ income. About 5 percent of Part B enrollees are affected by income-related monthly adjustment amounts:

  • Individuals with income between $85,000 and $107,000, and couples with earnings between $170,000 and $214,000 will see a $54.10 monthly premium increase, to $189.60.
  • Individuals with income between $107,000 and $133,500 and couples with earnings between $214,000 and $267,000 will see a $135.40 monthly premium increase, to $270.90.
  • Individuals with income between $133,500 and $160,000 and couples with earnings between $267,000 and $320,000 will see a $216.70 monthly premium increase, to $352.20.
  • Individuals with income between $160,000 and $500,000 and couples with earnings between $320,000 and $750,000 will see a $297.90 monthly premium increase, to $433.40.
  • Individuals with income exceeding $500,000 and couples with earnings more than $750,000 will see a $325.00 monthly premium increase, to $460.50.

Part B plans cover physician services, outpatient services, and some home health services.

Part B premiums and Social Security COLA

Part B premiums are deducted from Social Security payments. This week, the Social Security Administration announced a 2.8 percent cost of living adjustment to account for year-over-year inflation.

That will result in a $39 a month increase to the average benefit for all retirees, which will be $1,461 in 2019.

Under Social Security’s hold-harmless provision, increases in Part B premiums for some beneficiaries cannot be greater than Social Security’s COLA increase.

According to CMS, 3.5 percent of Medicare beneficiaries, or about 2 million enrollees, will pay less than the full Part B monthly premium on account of the hold-harmless provision.

Part B’s annual deductible will be $185 in 2019, up $2 from 2018.

Slight increases to Medicare Part A deductibles

Enrollees in Medicare Part A, which covers inpatient services, will see slightly higher deductible payments in 2019.

The inpatient hospital deductible will be $1,364 for 2019, up $24 from $1,340 in 2018.

About 99 percent of enrollees don’t pay a monthly premium on Part A plans because they paid into the program during working years.

The plan covers 60 days of inpatient care.

After that period is exhausted, beneficiaries pay daily co-insurance fees. In 2019, that rate will be $341 a day for days 61 to 90 in the hospital, and $682 a day after that. Those rates are up marginally from 2018.

Posted 9:00 AM

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