The traditional Medicare programs exclude the most common health-related issues such as dental, vision, and hearing. Traditional Medicare avoids covering the expenses for the treatments related to eyes, teeth, and ears. Now, Democrats in Congress are willing to fix this problem by providing additional funds to Medicare service providers.
As per the reports, Congressional Democrats have decided to expand the benefits provided by the traditional Medicare companies for the insurers. They have proposed a bill of $3.5 Trillion for the addition of these treatments.
The last time Congress added a drug facility in Medicare was in the year 2003. Since then there was no major update or additional benefits added to this service. It is a major update that we hear from the committee towards the healthcare industry. This move will surely help millions of adults who have their health covered using Medicare.
Since the treatments for vision, hearing, and dental are very expensive, adding them to the existing Medicare would be costly. This move will put up an extra burden on those who participate in the programs set by the insurance companies. As a result, the participants have to pay additional money for the premiums against their Medicare.
If we talk about the present times, every participant in the United States pays $148.50 as a Plan B Premium. After adding these additional benefits, the Plan B Premiums would surely go high.
It was just an announcement as the Democrats didn’t mention the specific dates or other details regarding this new move in the Healthcare Industry. The same proposal was made in 2019 which would have cost over $350 billion over ten years.
Most of the Citizens face oral health issues. So if we go by the data, over two-thirds of the funds will be utilized only for dental-related treatments. For this reason, the present Medicare doesn’t support the treatments of dental-related problems and hearing and vision-related as they are expensive and the most common ones.
What Treatments are Excluded from the Medicare?
Dental-related issues that arise from various health conditions and all the other dental treatments are not covered in Medicare. Medicare will not pay for gum diseases or any other diseases caused by cancer or any other health issue.
In other conditions, Medicare will cover the repair of the tooth if it is removed to find the tumor. As mentioned above, over two-thirds of Medicare beneficiaries have undergone dental treatments. The data shows that over 37 million Medicare users have received dental-related treatments.
From the data, over half of the beneficiaries have not visited the dental clinics in the past year. And from the same data over 15% of users have reported that there are no teeth present in their mouth due to old age. Most people don’t pay attention to their oral health which leads to unwanted dental and gum-related issues.
Moving on to the hearing problems, over one-third of the beneficiaries between the age of 65 and 74 years have hearing loss. Hearing aids are also expensive just like modern dental treatments. On average, hearing aids would cost between $1,000 to $5,000.
In the recent executive order, the present President of the United States, Mr. Joe Biden urged the Drug Counters to make the hearing aids available. This will eventually reduce the cost of the hearing aids and will make them easily available for the needy.
Now, making the hearing aids available in Medicare would help millions of adults with Medicare facilities. They will be able to receive hearing aids and can improve their quality of life.
Comparison Between Traditional Medicare and Medicare Advantage
The Medicare Advantage plans offered by Medicare Insurance providers include the treatments of dental, hearing, and vision problems with Plan C Premium. The Plan C Premiums put an extra burden on the shoulders of the insurers. However, these Medicare Insurance plans cover all the expenses for the costly treatments.
Medicare Advantage Plans have covered over 42% of the insurers by providing the much-needed treatments and their expenses. These plans are quite popular among adults with good monthly income or we can say those who can afford extra premiums.
Who will Pay?
Democrats are yet to decide how the extra money for the additional benefits will be covered. There is only one way with which these additional benefits can be added to Medicare, by raising the premiums. If they do so, then how much premium will be increased is still a matter of discussion.
Over 75% of Medicare Premium B is acquired by the Taxpayers. The Democrats are willing to cover the money from the Taxpayers who have enrolled in the Medicare Premium B plan. The official announcement is yet to be made but as per the reports, they are planning to do the same.
We all know about the importance of covering dental, hearing, and vision in the list of the existing Medicare benefits. These additional benefits will improve the quality of life of the old age people as these problems arise in the group of 65 and 74 years.
The Democrats of Congress aims to strengthen senior healthcare with this new move. Only time will tell us more about the benefits explained in this article. We expect to hear more from the officials very soon.