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The Affordable Care Act: How it Will Impact Seniors

Alison Stanton | Oct 3, 2013, 2:06 p.m.

For seniors who are currently on Medicaid, Perikly says, it is important that they renew their eligibility to maintain their benefits. “Seniors who lose eligibility can find new options for health coverage on the Health Insurance Marketplace. People whose household income is between 100 and 400 percent of the poverty line are eligible for financial assistance to purchase health insurance in the Marketplace.”

What impact will the ACA have on seniors’ wallets?

Seniors who are eligible for Medicare can choose from traditional Medicare with a Prescription Drug Plan, a Medicare Advantage Plan or a Medicare Advantage with Prescription Drug Plan, Perikly says.

While traditional Medicare offers flexibility in service area and provider networks, she says Medicare Advantage plans may offer financial savings.

“There are also options for assistance with Medicare premiums for seniors who are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid, called dual eligible,” Perikly says. “Medicare Advantage plans designed for seniors who are dual eligible offer assistance with costs, coordination of health care benefits, as well as extra benefits not offered by traditional Medicare, such as dental and vision.”

Seniors who are not eligible for Medicare may be eligible for financial assistance for health insurance through Medicaid or through the Health Insurance Marketplace.

As part of ACA, seniors on Medicare will be able to take advantage of certain preventive services, such as mammograms and colonoscopies, without paying the Part B coinsurance or deductible, Bierly says.

“The coverage that is part of the Medicaid expansion will meet the essential health benefits as they are offered in the Marketplace,” she says, adding that seniors who are on Medicaid will probably find that more services are covered with the ACA. This includes mammograms and colonoscopies, she says, which previously required people to pay a copay. Yearly wellness exams will also be free.

In addition, Perikly is aware that many seniors are concerned about fraudulent activity. To help safeguard and protect themselves from fraud, she says seniors should remember the following:

• It’s against the law for someone who knows that a person has Medicare to sell him or her a Health Insurance Marketplace plan.

• Do not share a Medicare number or other personal information with anyone who knocks on the door or contacts someone uninvited to sell him or her a health plan.

For Help Understanding

There are a lot of trusted resources where seniors can get reliable information about the ACA. For example:

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid:

www.CMS.gov

Health Insurance Marketplace:

www.HealthCare.gov

Kaiser Family Foundation:

www.kff.org

Subsidy Calculator:

kff.org/interactive/subsidy-calculator/

Stop Medicare Fraud:

www.StopMedicareFraud.gov

Senior Medicare Patrol—Empowering Seniors to Prevent Healthcare Fraud:

www.SMPresource.org

In addition, Rose Law Group is offering a new suite of services to protect the elderly from scams and to help seniors and their families navigate their way through the bureaucratic, legal, health and logistical challenges that can become overwhelming for seniors and their families. Called The Golden Years Concierge Service, it will include assistance with proper planning for health care, Medicare and Medicaid. For more information: (480) 505-3936 or www.RoseLawGroup.com.

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