Tag Archives: Part B

Proposed budget compromise includes gradual increase in Medicare premiums

About Liz Seegert

Liz Seegert (@lseegert), is AHCJ’s topic editor on aging. Her work has appeared in NextAvenue.com, Journal of Active Aging, Cancer Today, Kaiser Health News, the Connecticut Health I-Team and other outlets. She is a senior fellow at the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement at George Washington University and co-produces the HealthCetera podcast.

While much of America was watching the New York Mets and Kansas City Royals battle it out for 14 long innings Tuesday night, House Republican leadership and the White House were battling out a budget compromise. The agreement still must be approved by the full House and the Senate. Update: The House passed the bill with a 266 to 167 vote late Wednesday and the Senate approved it on Friday.

The bill funds federal government for the next two years and avoids a potential government shutdown. The deal plugs an impending hole in the Social Security disability trust fund. Without it, millions getting disability would have seen their benefits significantly cut. It also staves off a potentially historic increase in Medicare for Part B premiums for about 15 million beneficiaries.

The Medicare provision stalls a scheduled cut to the rates doctors get paid under Medicare by law for three months. Legislators hope to come up with a permanent fix to slow Medicare costs. Continue reading