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CMS letter on Illinois retiree Medicare supplemental.

October 21, 2013

Illinois state retirees have been holding their breath and many were fearing the worst these past weeks.

Today Central Management Services released some of the information that retirees who are Medicare eligible and using the state health care system have been waiting for.

For most the news will be good for a change.

Although every individual has different needs, the news of the plan produced an audible sigh of relief among the nearly 400 hundred delegates of the Illinois Retired Teachers Association meeting today and tomorrow in Springfield.

The cost of premiums is available here.

Individual premiums will be 75% subsidized.

Dependent coverage will be 25% subsidized.

Any doctor that accepts Medicare will accept users of Medicare Advantage.

All Medicare benefits that are currently provided will continue to be provided.

The deductible is reduced from the current Cigna plan from $500 to $250.

Out-of-pocket is reduced from $1250 to $1000.

A drug plan is included.

Many people will still have questions. But those meeting here were pleased at the news.

Finally it appears Illinois state retirees are hearing something good.

I am looking forward to hearing the reaction from readers.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. Atkinson permalink
    October 21, 2013 6:11 pm

    All doctors that take Medicare…do not take Medicare Advantage!!! I called my Loyola doctors!

    Sent from my iPad Mca

  2. Rich permalink
    October 21, 2013 7:33 pm

    Call your doctor and see if they will accept the plan.

  3. cswangren@sbcglobal.net permalink
    October 21, 2013 7:51 pm

    Well, CMS will need to clue in many, many doctors, who STILL (today) are saying that they don’t take any Medicare Advantage PPO insurance. (But did take our CIGNA) AND……places like Northwestern, Rush, and other top tier hospitals will ALSO need to agree to take our NEW Medicare Advantage PPO insurance. CMS may claim that all is well, but we can’t trust this until providers actually acknowledge that they will take our insurance. Beware of anything short of this.

    Chuck Swangren

    Sent from my iPad

    >

  4. Norm Garrett permalink
    October 21, 2013 8:13 pm

    Your statement that “any doctor that accepts Medicare will accept users of Medicare Advantage” is not exactly true. The actual wording in the letter states that “Members can see any willing provider as long as the provider is in the Medicare program.” The key word is “willing,” and it’s imperative that you check with your own provider to make sure they will take this program. Nationally, providers that accept Medicare Advantage programs are a subset of those that accept Medicare, meaning that a provider that accepts Medicare may NOT accept an advantage plan. We can make no assumptions here. Check with your provider.

  5. October 21, 2013 8:29 pm

    My doctor in Dallas Tx. will not accept medicare .

  6. Bob Lindahl permalink
    October 22, 2013 3:30 pm

    Most of this looks good, but I am concerned that if we accept this plan, that in the event Cullerton’s original proposal (keep COLA, drop subsidized insurance) ever returns tot he table, that once we have dropped Medicare to go to Medicare Advantage, we will not be able to get back in, thus forcing us to lose the COLA. What am I missing here??

    • Fred Klonsky permalink*
      October 22, 2013 5:38 pm

      Mainly what your missing is that nothing in this deal involves losing Medicare.

  7. Norm Garrett permalink
    October 22, 2013 7:28 pm

    You can drop the state Medicare Advantage plan and return to regular Medicare during any annual choice period. For some, however, staying with regular Medicare and then later returning to the state plan is not an option.

    It’s tempting to leave the state with my (soon to be) 2% I’m already paying them funneled toward a Medigap policy. Add a Plan D and dental (both relatively inexpensive) and I’m covered. However, like all of our decisions we’re being forced to make here, it’s a gamble. What if the supreme court comes back and says they can’t charge those of us who have worked 20 years or more? If the state plan moves back to free, then staying with regular medicare doesn’t make a lot of financial sense. But we don’t know that and probably won’t before we have to decide.

    It’s also hard to do any long-term planning with our COLA in grave jeopardy.

  8. Pauline E. permalink
    November 7, 2013 11:28 am

    Thank you for the precise and welcome summary of Medicare coverage.

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