Medicare Open Enrollment: What Changed in Response to the Coronavirus?

Q. I know that the Medicare Open Enrollment Period starts next month. Have there been any changes that I should know about in response to the coronavirus? Do you have any tips for Open Enrollment? This is my first one. Thanks for … [Read more...]

CMS Launches New Compare Tool, Featuring All Eight Healthcare Tools in One Place

Lois’ mom moved to Northern Virginia last winter. Since she has been here, she has needed new doctors, a hospital for a surgical procedure, and a new physical therapist. Lois tried to be helpful in finding her mother names of … [Read more...]

Groundbreaking Decision Made on Observation Status Appeals

Q. My mother, Ellen, spent a week in the hospital and ended up having surgery. She was seen by doctors and nurses, given several tests, had the surgery, and then got sent to a nursing home for two weeks of rehabilitation. She is … [Read more...]

The Five Biggest Things to Know About Medicare

Q. I am turning 65 this year and will qualify for Medicare. I want to make sure I do things properly when it comes to applying. For instance, do I have to wait until I'm actually 65 to start the process, or can I start ahead of … [Read more...]

Telehealth Scams are on the Rise: How Not to Fall Prey

This past winter, John Ernest got a call that showed up on his caller ID as being from "Medicare," asking if his father, Dean, who lived in a nursing home at the time, needed a free orthotic brace for pain. John knew that Medicare … [Read more...]

Open Enrollment is Now Much Easier

  Nancy had been counting down the days to her retirement for a couple of years now. As the day got closer, she turned in her retirement paperwork to human resources, enjoyed the party her co-workers threw for her, and … [Read more...]

Is There Any Recourse for Hefty Observation Status Bills?

Q. In the past, you answered questions about hospitalized people who were too sick to go home but not sick enough to be admitted. Many of them were in the hospital for a week, thinking it would be covered by Medicare. They were … [Read more...]

Critter Corner: New “What’s Covered” App for Medicare

Dear Ernie and Jannette, I am often uncertain about what's covered by Medicare. I really dislike being put on hold forever when I call CMS with questions. Are there any easy ways to see what's covered and what's … [Read more...]

Does Medicare Cover Annual Physicals?

Q. My sister Amy, 66, recently called her primary care doctor’s office to schedule an annual checkup. She naturally assumed her Medicare coverage would pick up most, if not all, of the tab for the exam. After all, an annual visit … [Read more...]

Two Popular Medigap Plans are Being Shuttered — What It Means for You!

Q. A couple of years ago, my aunt Linda applied for a Plan F Medigap plan and the insurance company approved her. The following year, she saw a specialist about some hip problems she was experiencing, went for an MRI, and ended up … [Read more...]