Medicare Premiums Up

Physician's Money Digest, January31 2004, Volume 11, Issue 2

Patients who have Medicare are payingmore for their Part B health insurancecoverage this year, and their Part Bdeductible is also going up. While SocialSecurity checks grew by a slim 2.1% as ofJanuary 1, the premium for Medicare'sPart B coverage, which helps pay forphysician services, jumped a hefty 13.5%over last year. Social Security checks forMedicare beneficiaries are now nicked fora $66.60 monthly Part B premium, all butwiping out the benefit increase for manyseniors. Medicare has also boosted thefront-end deductible for hospital careunder Part A from $840 to $876, anincrease of 4.3%.