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November 15, 2021
What You Need to Know About Your 2022 Medicare Benefits

What You Need to Know About Your 2022 Medicare Benefits

There are several Medicare changes taking place in 2022, and we’ve read through all the fine print to bring you a quick recap.

From the major Part B premium increase to the anticipated coverage decision for the expensive new Alzheimer's drug, Aduhelm, here's what you need to know about Medicare changes in 2022.

Reminder! The Medical Annual Open Enrollment Period ends December 7 – call us at 833-801-7999 make changes to your health and drug plans before it's over!

Key 2022 Medicare Costs

Your costs for Original Medicare, which includes Parts A and B, have increased significantly for 2022. This increase is the largest one our office has ever seen.

The Part B premium is increasing by 14.5% for 2022. CMS says the major increase is due to rising costs, increase utilization, and uncertainty about the expensive Alzheimer's drug, Aduhelm.

  • Medicare Part B premium: $170.10 in 2022 ($148.50 in 2021)
  • Medicare Part B deductible: $233 in 2022 ($203 in 2021)
  • Medicare Part A deductible: $1,556 in 2022 ($1,484 in 2021)

Less than 1% of people pay a premium for Medicare Part A, but for those that do, premiums have increased slightly. You'll pay between $274-$499 per month in 2022 for Part A's hospital coverage, but again, this effects very few Medicare beneficiaries.

IRMAA Brackets Have Increased

If you have a high income, you pay a higher premium for Medicare coverage (called IRMAA, or Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amounts).

As of 2022, the income thresholds have gone up.

In addition, the highest-income couples will be paying nearly $14,000 per year in Medicare Part B premiums.

Read More: Are Medicare Costs Based On Your Income?

Aduhelm Coverage Uncertainty

CMS says one of the main reasons Medicare Part B prices are increasing so drastically is because of the uncertainty surrounding Aduhelm. Aduhelm is a controversial new drug that may help slow down the progression of Alzheimer's.

Aduhelm costs $56,000 per year, and there are potentially millions of Medicare enrollees who would qualify for the drug if Medicare decided to cover it. The cost of this drug would greatly increase Part B expenses for Medicare, so they are increasing Part B premiums to prepare.

We won't know if Medicare will cover Aduhelm until the coverage determination is done, which is expected in early 2022.

COVID-19 Booster Shots

As always, Medicare is offering 100% coverage for all COVID-19 testing, including antibody, or "serology" tests.

Medicare also covers the COVID-19 vaccine in full. Now that booster shots are needed, Medicare is also offering full coverage. You do need to qualify for the booster shot in order to receive coverage.

Here are the eligibility rules for COVID-19 booster shot coverage:

  • If you got a Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine and are 65 years or older (or 18 years or older and at high risk for getting severe COVID-19), you can get a booster shot at least 6 months after you complete your second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine series.
  • If you got a Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine and are 18 years or older, you can get a booster shot at least 2 months after you got your first shot.

Continued Lower Insulin Costs For Participating Part D Plans

On January 1, 2021, you were able to get Medicare drug coverage that offers broad access to many types of insulin for no more than $35 for a 30-day supply.

You can get this savings on insulin if you join a Medicare drug plan or Medicare Advantage Plan with drug coverage that participates in the insulin savings model. This model lets you choose among drug plans that offer insulin at a predictable and affordable cost.

Thankfully, this model is continuing to expand for 2022. Getting access to affordable insulin is now easier than ever.

Our licensed insurance agents here at Medicare Allies can help you find a plan that offers this savings on insulin in your state. Just give us a call at 833-801-7999! You can join a participating plan during Open Enrollment (October 15 – December 7).

Need Help? Call Medicare Allies

Those are the big Medicare changes to expect in 2022. If you have any questions about how these changes will affect you or your coverage, give us a call at 833-801-7999, and we’ll be happy to help you!

Also, be sure to download a copy of the 2022 Medicare & You Handbook if you haven't already!

Luke Hockaday
By
Luke Hockaday
Luke Hockaday is a Customer Success Rep here at Medicare Allies. Luke has been helping Medicare-eligible clients with their insurance and retirement-planning needs since 2011. Luke is passionate about 3 things, and 3 things only: senior insurance, football, and food!

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