Thursday, November 17, 2016

Legislation To Begin The Repeal Of Obamacare Could Be Signed On Inauguration Day

By Coleen Elkins                  24-7 Health Insurance 

There are several articles recently published reflecting opinions on how Obamacare will be repealed and replaced.

The general Consensus among Republican legislators is they will begin on January 1 2017 to have bills ready for the signature of President Elect Trump after the Inauguration ceremony is complete.

"The original health care law itself was 2,700 pages, but there were also more than 40,000 pages of administrative rules, regulatory guidance, and even blog posts setting Obamacare policy" they wrote "A lot of this can be scaled back on Day One".

If the mandate is lifted the penalty for not purchasing "minimal essential coverage" will be removed as well.

Some insurance products have surfaced in the past few months known as "MEC" plans. To help you understand a MEC plan in simple terms the consumer is paying $55.00 to $85.00 a month to avoid the tax penalty.

The plans offer a wellness exam or hospitalization. None of them "insure" your health. The idea is to couple a MEC with supplement plans that pay cash to you if you become ill. The problem is none of those policies pay enough cash to pay for treatment of a catastrophic event such as heart disease or cancer treatment. Consumers can purchase substandard health insurance to couple with the MEC plan but many of these companies have poor quality ratings and past complaints against them from consumers.

At 24-7 Health Insurance we have the tools to provide our clients with an individual needs assessment. This way our clients can choose their health insurance from multiple options that helps meet their current needs. You may not get exactly what you would like to have immediately but your health will be insured.

We are now attending "post election" carrier and legislative seminars to be able to educate our clients on the future of health insurance for 2017 and beyond. If we can be of assistance please visit our website and contact us.

We are licensed in 11 states. If we are not licensed in your state we will help you find an agent to assist you.

You can read the full Political article quoted above here 

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Medicare Part A and B Premiums For 2017 Announced

By Coleen Elkins       24-7 Healthinsurance  and Medicare 4 Arizona 

November 10, 2016 
Contact: CMS Media Relations
(202) 690-6145 | CMS Media Inquiries

2017 Medicare Parts A & B Premiums and Deductibles Announced
Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced the 2017 premiums for the Medicare inpatient hospital (Part A) and physician and outpatient hospital services (Part B) programs.
Medicare Part B Premiums/Deductibles
Medicare Part B covers physician services, outpatient hospital services, certain home health services, durable medical equipment, and other items.

On October 18, 2016, the Social Security Administration announced that the cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for Social Security benefits will be 0.3 percent for 2017. Because of the low Social Security COLA, a statutory “hold harmless” provision designed to protect seniors, will largely prevent Part B premiums from increasing for about 70 percent of beneficiaries. Among this group, the average 2017 premium will be about $109.00, compared to $104.90 for the past four years.

For the remaining roughly 30 percent of beneficiaries, the standard monthly premium for Medicare Part B will be $134.00 for 2017, a 10 percent increase from the 2016 premium of $121.80. Because of the “hold harmless” provision covering the other 70 percent of beneficiaries, premiums for the remaining 30 percent must cover most of the increase in Medicare costs for 2017 for all beneficiaries. This year, as in the past, the Secretary has exercised her statutory authority to mitigate projected premium increases for these beneficiaries, while continuing to maintain a prudent level of reserves to protect against unexpected costs. 

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will work with Congress as it explores budget-neutral solutions to challenges created by the “hold harmless” provision.
“Medicare’s top priority is to ensure that beneficiaries have affordable access to the care they need,” said CMS Acting Administrator Andy Slavitt. “We will continue our efforts to improve affordability, access, and quality in Medicare.” 
Medicare Part B beneficiaries not subject to the “hold harmless” provision include beneficiaries who do not receive Social Security benefits, those who enroll in Part B for the first time in 2017, those who are directly billed for their Part B premium, those who are dually eligible for Medicaid and have their premium paid by state Medicaid agencies, and those who pay an income-related premium. These groups represent approximately 30 percent of total Part B beneficiaries.

CMS also announced that the annual deductible for all Medicare Part B beneficiaries will be $183 in 2017 (compared to $166 in 2016). Premiums and deductibles for Medicare Advantage and prescription drug plans are already finalized and are unaffected by this announcement.
Since 2007, beneficiaries with higher incomes have paid higher Medicare Part B monthly premiums. These income-related monthly premium rates affect roughly five percent of people with Medicare. 

The total Medicare Part B premiums for high income beneficiaries for 2017 are shown in the following table:
Beneficiaries who file an individual tax return with income:
Beneficiaries who file a joint tax return with income:
Income-related monthly adjustment amount

Total monthly premium amount
Less than or equal to $85,000
Less than or equal to $170,000

Greater than $85,000 and less than or equal to $107,000
Greater than $170,000 and less than or equal to $214,000

Greater than $107,000 and less than or equal to $160,000
Greater than $214,000 and less than or equal to $320,000

Greater than  $160,000 and less than or equal to $214,000
Greater than $320,000 and less than or equal to $428,000

Greater than $214,000
Greater than $428,000

Premiums for beneficiaries who are married and lived with their spouse at any time during the taxable year, but file a separate return, are as follows:
Beneficiaries who are married and lived with their spouse at any time during the year, but file a separate tax return from their spouse:
Income-related monthly adjustment amount
Total monthly premium amount

Less than or equal to $85,000

Greater than $85,000 and less than or equal to $129,000

Greater than $129,000

Medicare Part A Premiums/Deductibles
Medicare Part A covers inpatient hospital, skilled nursing facility, and some home health care services. About 99 percent of Medicare beneficiaries do not have a Part A premium since they have at least 40 quarters of Medicare-covered employment.
The Medicare Part A inpatient hospital deductible that beneficiaries pay when admitted to the hospital will be $1,316 per benefit period in 2017, an increase of $28 from $1,288 in 2016. 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 a coinsurance amount of $329 per day for the 61st through 90th day of hospitalization ($322 in 2016) in a benefit period and $658 per day for lifetime reserve days ($644 in in 2016). For beneficiaries in skilled nursing facilities, the daily coinsurance for days 21 through 100 of extended care services in a benefit period will be $164.50 in 2017 ($161 in 2016).
Enrollees age 65 and over who have fewer than 40 quarters of coverage and certain persons with disabilities pay a monthly premium in order to receive coverage under Medicare Part A. Individuals who had at least 30 quarters of coverage or were married to someone with at least 30 quarters of coverage may buy into Part A at a reduced monthly premium rate, which will be $227 in 2017, a $1 increase from 2016. Uninsured aged and certain individuals with disabilities who have exhausted other entitlement and who have less than 30 quarters of coverage will pay the full premium, which will be $413 a month, a $2 increase from 2016.

Part A Deductible and Coinsurance Amounts for Calendar Years 2016 and 2017 by Type of Cost Sharing


Inpatient hospital deductible

Daily coinsurance for 61st-90th Day

Daily coinsurance for lifetime reserve days

Skilled Nursing Facility coinsurance

For more information on the 2017 Medicare Parts A and B premiums and deductibles (CMS-8062-N, CMS-8063-N, CMS-8064-N), please visit

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Wednesday, November 9, 2016

President Elect Donald J. Trumps Vision To Replace Obamacare

By Coleen Elkins     24-7 Health Insurance

President Elect Donald J. Trump's vision for the future of health insurance in America. 

5/4/2016 Healthcare Reform | Donald J Trump for President 3/3

Congress must act. Our elected representatives in the House and Senate must:

1. Completely repeal Obamacare. Our elected representatives must eliminate he individual mandate. No person should be required to buy insurance unless he or she wants to.

2. Modify existing law that inhibits the sale of health insurance across state lines. As long as the plan purchased complies with state requirements, any vendor ought to be able to offer insurance in any state. By allowing full competition in this market, insurance costs will go down and consumer satisfaction will go up. 

3. Allow individuals to fully deduct health insurance premium payments from their tax returns under the current tax system. Businesses are allowed to take these deductions so why wouldn’t Congress allow individuals the same exemptions? As we allow the free market to provide insurance coverage opportunities to companies and individuals, we must also make sure that no one slips through the cracks simply because they cannot afford insurance. We must review basic options for Medicaid and work with states to ensure that those who want healthcare coverage can have it. 

4. Allow individuals to use Health Savings Accounts (HSAs). Contributions into HSAs should be tax-free and should be allowed to accumulate. These accounts would become part of the estate of the individual and could be passed on to heirs without fear of any death penalty. These plans should be  particularly attractive to young people who are healthy and can afford high deductible insurance plans. These funds can be used by any member of a family without penalty. The flexibility and security provided by HSAs will be of great benefit to all who participate.

5. Require price transparency from all healthcare providers, especially doctors and healthcare organizations like clinics and hospitals. Individuals should be able to shop to find the best prices for procedures, exams or any other medical-related procedure.

6. Block-grant Medicaid to the states. Nearly every state already offers benefits beyond what is required in the current Medicaid structure. The state governments know their people best and can manage the administration of Medicaid far better without federal overhead. States will have the incentives to seek out and eliminate fraud, waste and abuse to preserve our precious resources.
The reforms outlined above will lower healthcare costs for all Americans. They are simply a place to start. There are other reforms that might be considered if simply a place to start.
 If they serve to lower costs, remove uncertainty and provide financial security for all Americans. And we must also take actions in other policy areas to lower healthcare costs and burdens. Enforcing immigration laws, eliminating fraud and waste and energizing our economy will relieve the economic pressures felt by every American. It is the moral responsibility of a nation’s government to do what is best for the people and what is in the interest of securing the future of the nation. Providing healthcare to illegal immigrants costs us some $11 billion annually.

7. Remove barriers to entry into free markets for drug providers that offer safe, reliable and cheaper products. Congress will need the courage to step away from the special interests and do what is right for America. Though the pharmaceutical industry is in the private sector, drug companies provide a public service. 
Allowing consumers access to imported, safe and dependable rugs from overseas will bring more options to consumers.

Providing healthcare to illegal immigrants costs us some $11 billion annually.

If we were to simply enforce the current immigration laws and restrict the unbridled granting of visas to this country, we could relieve healthcare cost pressures on state and local governments.

To reduce the number of individuals needing access to programs like Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program we will need to install programs that grow the economy and bring capital and jobs back to America. The best social program has always been a job – and taking care of our economy will go a long way towards reducing our dependence on public health programs.

Finally, we need to reform our mental health programs and institutions in this country. Families, without the ability to get the information needed to help those who are ailing, are too often not given the tools to help their loved ones. There are promising reforms being developed in Congress that should receive bi-partisan support.

To reform healthcare in America, we need a President who has the leadership skills, will and courage to engage the American people and convince Congress to do what is best for the country.  These straightforward reforms, along with many others I have proposed throughout my campaign, will ensure that together we will Make America Great Again.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

A Snap Shot Of 2017 Under Age 65 Obamacare Rates In Yuma County Arizona

By Coleen Elkins      24-7 Health Insurance

They say "A picture is worth 1000 words".

We hope you share this photo of a "sample" proposal we created today November 1, 2016.

This proposal is for a married couple each 60 years of age in Yuma County Arizona for under age 65 health insurance beginning January 1, 2017. This photo reflects a Silver and a plan option. Yes this is their MONTHLY health insurance premium owed.

Their only health insurance carrier option IS Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona. They are mandated to purchase this plan by the federal government because is is the only plan meeting the criteria of the Affordable Care Act. Pay attention to the deductible and out of pocket each of them would have to pay before the plan covers them 100 percent.

As of today we still are unable to quote for those living in Maricopa County because Blue Cross Blue Shield refuses to insure in Maricopa County Arizona and if there is another carrier available they have yet to post their rates.