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Medicare Part B Premium Increase Lower Than Expected
Date:10/27/2011

onth, in 2012. The deductible is also increasing to $1,156 from $1,132 -- a $24 increase.

Sebelius added that Medicare is stronger due to the Affordable Care Act. In addition, she noted the people who opt for Medicare Advantage will pay 4 percent less in 2012 than they did in 2011.

The premium for Medicare Part D, the prescription drug program, will remain unchanged, she said. Also people who go over the allotted benefit and fall into the so-called doughnut hole will get a 50 percent discount on covered brand name drugs. "That's real money back in peoples' pockets," Sebelius said.

"Already nearly 1.8 million Americans have saved almost $1 billion with these discounts last year and they will be available again next year as we work toward 2020 when we fully close the doughnut hole," she said.

The open enrollment period for Medicare started Oct. 15 and closes on Dec. 7.

More information

For more information on Medicare, visit the Medicare.gov.

SOURCES: Oct. 27, 2011, teleconference with: Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services


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