Each fall, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) renews the federal guidelines that seek to protect individuals whose...
November was National Family Caregivers Month, and it was a time to honor the more than 50 million unsung heroes...
Although death benefits are available to veterans, as well as their families and veterans who did not engage in combat, less than half of those who are eligible for death benefits use them.
Most people receiving Medicare enroll in voluntary prescription drug coverage (Medicare Part D). Fifty million beneficiaries selected medication coverage in 2023.
Under a new Medicare Prescription Payment Plan starting in 2025, all Medicare prescription drug plans, including Medicare Advantage plans, will offer enrollees the option to spread out their prescription drug out-of-pocket costs over 12 months.
Many Medicare recipients struggle to make ends meet. Special savings programs administered by each state can help cover certain Medicare costs, such as premiums and deductibles.
The COVID-19 Public Health Emergency offically ended in May 2023. Certain policies that were implemented in early 2020 during the PHE will now expire.
In a major win for nursing home residents and their families, the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld the right to sue government-run nursing homes under the Federal Nursing Home Reform Act.
More than 1.1 million individuals live in about 15,000 nursing homes nationwide, yet as many as one in nine of these facilities have not had an annual inspection in the past two years.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has announced that it would begin covering new Alzheimer's treatments that receive approval from the FDA.
For those who wish to maintain their independence and continue living at home as they grow older, taking certain steps to protect their physical, mental, and financial welfare is essential.
For adults who rely on Medicaid, a bill recently passed by the House may mean holding a job would become necessary to continue accessing benefits.
A new AARP analysis gives a glimpse into the experiences of family caregivers and offers recommendations on policies and practices that policymakers should consider enacting or enhancing in support of caregivers nationwide.
Hospice care is a type of health care that patients with terminally ill conditions rely on at the end of their lives.
Join attorney Justin Ellis as he discusses why it is so important to have an elder-focused estate plan that memorializes...
It has been a tumultuous few years. However, with the new year upon us, there are some silver linings - in particular for seniors. Here are five reasons for seniors to celebrate in 2023.
The Senate and House have cleared the passage of a year-end $1.7 trillion appropriations bill that will benefit older adults on a number of fronts.
Although Medicaid and Medicare are both public health insurance programs, they have essential differences.
Recent findings show an information gap among Medicaid recipients regarding the need to re-enroll for benefits after the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) ends.
A diagnosis of dementia, a category of diseases affecting memory and thinking that includes Alzheimer’s disease, can feel overwhelming and...
A new study reveals that 60 percent of family members who were taking care of loved ones with Alzheimer's disease exhibited symptoms of depression that worsened over time
AginginPlace.org provides a freely available, medically reviewed guide on preventing falls, with lifestyle, mobility, and home improvement recommendations to help you avoid falls, maintain independence, and assuage any fears you may have of falling.
The Federal Trade Commission has issued an alert that scammers offering free COVID-19 tests have been targeting Medicare recipients online, by phone, and through television advertisements.
Nursing home evictions, or involuntary discharges or transfers, disrupt the lives of residents, leading to homelessness, separation from familial support systems, and loss of care. As federal law covers all federally funded nursing home residents, nursing home evictions are legal only in particular instances.
Medicaid Pending status means that your application or your parent’s application has not yet been approved or denied. Essentially, your application is in limbo.
If you need a lot of cash on hand upon retirement, Social Security offers a lump-sum payment option that’s worth six months of retroactive benefits. However, it comes at a cost. It is important to understand the details before agreeing to the payment.
In an alarming number of cases, private Medicare Advantage plans are denying coverage for medical services that would be covered under original Medicare, according to a federal investigation.
Leaving a nursing home to return home is a goal for many residents and their families, but it requires careful consideration. While returning home is a good move for some, it won't work for everyone.
If you apply for long-term care assistance through Medicaid and your application is denied, the situation may seem hopeless. The good news is that you can appeal the decision.
When loved ones pass away, there are lots of considerations, including what happens to their Social Security. The decedent’s payments need to be stopped, but survivor’s benefits may be available to the spouse or, in certain cases, children.
While declining COVID-19 cases are good news, the end of the pandemic could mean millions of Medicaid recipients will lose their coverage. Federal law has prevented states from terminating Medicaid benefits while the coronavirus health emergency is in place.
A federal court has ruled that hospitalized Medicare beneficiaries who were switched from inpatient to observation status can appeal the decision, making it easier for them to receive coverage for subsequent nursing home care.
If a loved one is experiencing memory loss or suddenly making poor decisions, you may want the court to appoint a guardian, which requires a declaration of incompetence.
Anyone who gifted assets within five years of applying for Medicaid may be subject to a penalty period, but that penalty can be reduced or eliminated if the assets are returned.
Vaccines can become less effective over time. Even individuals fully vaccinated as children may need to update their immunizations. Medicare Parts B and D offer vaccination coverage.
When applying for Medicaid’s long-term care coverage, in addition to the strict income and asset limits, you must demonstrate that you need a level care typically provided in a nursing home.
Medicare premiums are rising sharply next year, cutting into the large Social Security cost-of-living increase. The basic monthly premium will jump 15.5 percent, or $21.60, from $148.50 to $170.10 a month.
The Biden administration is calling on Congress to pass proposals to lower prescription drug prices, including allowing Medicare to negotiate with drug companies and capping out-of-pocket spending by Medicare beneficiaries.
Rising inflation due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic means that in 2022, Social Security benefits will go up 5.9 percent, the sharpest upsurge since 1983.
Individuals who are researching nursing homes can now see staff and resident vaccination rates along with other quality and safety measure information at Medicare’s Nursing Home Compare website. The official Medicare website includes a nursing home rating system. Nursing Home Compare...
Every year during Medicare's Open Enrollment Period, which runs from October 15 to December 7, Medicare gives beneficiaries a window of opportunity to shop around and determine if their current Medicare plan is still the best one for them.
The government has expanded access to protections for spouses of reverse mortgage holders who are not named in the loan document, allowing more such spouses the ability to stay in their home if the borrowing spouse dies or moves to a care facility.
The Senate Democrats' proposal for a $3.5 trillion spending plan includes expanding Medicare to provide dental, vision, and hearing benefits. The proposal is now being negotiated in Congress.
Studies have found that workers overestimate how much they will receive in Social Security benefits when they retire. Having a good understanding of the realities can help you plan for retirement.
As COVID-19 cases start to rise again due to the highly contagious Delta variant, nursing homes are considering requiring staff members to be vaccinated. Only 59 percent of nursing home staff are partially or fully vaccinated nationwide, and the percentages are much lower in some states.
Qualifying for Medicare hardly means free health care -- there are still premiums and deductibles. However, people who qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid (called “dual eligibility”) receive help paying their out-of-pocket costs.
Medicaid long-term care benefits traditionally pay mainly for nursing home care, but the federal government can grant “waivers” to states allowing them to expand Medicaid to include home and community-based services. The downside is that receiving care in a nursing home is an entitlement, while getting care at home is not.
President Biden has introduced a plan to spend $400 billion over eight years on home and community-based care for the elderly and people with disabilities. The money would go to expand access to care and support higher-paying caregiving jobs.
Elder advocacy groups are calling for the elimination of Medicaid estate recovery after a congressional advisory commission concluded the practice recoups a tiny percentage of Medicaid spending while contributing to generational poverty and inequity.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has issued new guidance on whether families can visit loved ones in nursing homes. The guidance allows indoor visitation even when the resident has not been vaccinated.
The one-year deadline for nursing home residents on Medicaid to spend down their first round of stimulus checks is here, but they may have a little extra time.
President Biden has signed the latest COVID-19 relief bill, which in addition to authorizing stimulus checks, funding vaccine distribution, and extending unemployment benefits, also provides assistance to seniors in a number of ways.
Parents and other family members who want to pass on assets during their lifetimes may be tempted to gift the assets. Although setting up an irrevocable trust lacks the simplicity of giving a gift, it may be a better way to preserve assets for the future.
As the second (and maybe third) round of stimulus checks go out, it is important to know that nursing home residents are not required to turn their checks over to their nursing home.
Long-term care involves not only a loss of personal autonomy; it also comes at a tremendous financial price. Proper planning can help your family prepare for the financial toll and protect assets for future generations.
Long-term care insurance prices have suddenly skyrocketed by as much as 66 percent in one year, according to the 2021 Long-Term Care Insurance Price Index, an annual report from the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance, an industry group. The price increases apply to couples and single individuals.
Long-term care is the care you need if you can’t perform daily activities on your own for an extended period of time. There are a number of different ways that this kind of care can be provided.
Buying long-term care insurance is one way to protect against the high cost of long-term care. However, this type of insurance may not be for everyone, so consider all your options.
COVID vaccines are starting to roll out to nursing homes across the country, signaling the beginning of the end of the pandemic. Once your loved one has had both doses of the vaccine, you may be able to visit, but precautions are still necessary.
The holidays are a time when families come together to celebrate the season. And while this year might look a...
As Medicare premiums rise, a Medicare Advantage plan can seem like an attractive option. But if you are considering switching from Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage plan, you need to know what to look for.
If you are experiencing financial hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic, you may want to consider withdrawing money from your retirement account while you still can. The special exemption allowing early withdrawals without a penalty ends soon.
Join Attorney Christine Brown Murphy as she discusses strategies for attaining Medicaid eligibility, planning to pay for long term care...
Medicare's Open Enrollment Period, during which you can freely enroll in or switch plans, runs from October 15 to December 7. Now is the time to start shopping around to see whether your current choices are still the best ones for you.
Medicare beneficiaries who qualified for skilled nursing facility (SNF) coverage may be eligible for an additional 100 days of coverage. Whether beneficiaries can actually get the extended coverage is another question.
Husbands usually don’t take survivor’s benefits into account when claiming benefits, according to a recent study, meaning that many widows will needlessly experience a significant drop in income.
The coronavirus pandemic has forced nursing homes to place a number of restrictions on their residents. These constraints are having the unintended consequence of making it more difficult for nursing home residents to vote.
Talking about estate planning is a difficult, emotional topic but it’s essential for every family. These eight tips can help you discuss the hard topics thoroughly and respectfully and prepare you for the road ahead.
The coronavirus pandemic is having a profound effect on the current U.S. economy, and it may have a detrimental effect on Social Security’s long-term financial situation.
Raising the minimum wage by as little as 10 percent would significantly improve the safety and health of nursing home residents, according to new research.
Medigap policies that supplement Medicare’s basic coverage can cost vastly different amounts, depending on the company selling the policy, according to a new study. The findings highlight the importance of shopping around before purchasing a policy.
Stay-at-Home Orders and fear of infection from COVID-19 have left many families struggling to manage the care needs of their...
The coronavirus pandemic has had a devastating impact on those in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities. This has raised questions about how the virus has influenced the costs and provision of long-term care insurance.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is warning residents of long-term care facilities and their families that some facilities may unlawfully require residents who are on Medicaid to sign over their $1,200 pandemic relief checks.
The closure of Social Security offices has affected unemployed seniors who need to apply for Medicare after losing their employer health coverage. These seniors now have more time to enroll in Medicare or change plans.
When can you expect your coronavirus relief payment and how much will it be? The answer to the first question has been changing on an almost daily basis, but finally seems to have come into focus. Here’s the latest word.
With the coronavirus pandemic hitting nursing homes and assisted living facilities especially hard, families are wondering whether they should bring their parents or other loved ones home.
The economic impact stimulus payments approved by Congress have begun to be sent out by the IRS. Find out who...
With coronavirus dominating news coverage and creating alarm, it is important to know that Medicare and Medicaid will cover tests for the virus.
The federal government is broadly expanding coverage of Medicare telehealth services to beneficiaries and relaxing HIPAA enforcement, which will give doctors the ability to provide more services to patients remotely.
The spread of the coronavirus to nursing home residents has caused the federal government to direct nursing homes to restrict visitor access. Families are having to find new ways to stay in touch.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (“CARES”) Act was passed into law on March 27, 2020 and is a...