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What's New for Medicare in 2024?

January 01, 2024

What's New for Medicare in 2024?

As the calendar turns to a new year, many Americans find themselves sifting through resolutions and goals. But for those enrolled in Medicare, January also marks a time when the healthcare landscape experiences shifts and adjustments. In this blog post, we'll explore the annual changes to Medicare that take place every January, providing insight into what beneficiaries can expect and how they can navigate these updates for a smoother healthcare journey.

Premiums and Deductibles

One of the most noticeable changes each January is the adjustment of premiums and deductibles. Medicare Part A, which covers hospital stays and inpatient care, and Medicare Part B, covering outpatient services and doctor visits, often see modifications in their costs. It's crucial for beneficiaries to stay informed about these changes to budget accordingly for their healthcare expenses throughout the year.
  • Medicare Part B premiums will increase to $174.70 for 2024, an increase from $164.90 in 2023.
  • The Medicare Part A inpatient hospital deductible beneficiaries pay with hospital admission will be $1,632 in 2024, an increase of $32 from $1,600 in 2023.
  • About 99% of Medicare beneficiaries do not have to pay a Part A premium. 
  • If you pay for Part A coverage with at least 30 quarters of employment or are married to someone with the qualifying quarters, your premium is $278 in 2024, the same amount as in 2023. If you have between 30 and 39 quarters, your new premium is $505 a month in 2024, down $1 from $506 in 2023.
  • The annual deductible for all Medicare Part B beneficiaries is $240 in 2024, up from $226 in 2023.

Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA)

For higher-income beneficiaries, January brings updates to the Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA). IRMAA affects both Part B and Part D premiums, and the amount is based on the beneficiary's modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) from the prior 2 years. Understanding how changes in income can impact monthly premiums is essential for financial planning.
Prescription Drug Coverage (Part D)

In addition to the elimination of catastrophic coverage coinsurance and reduced insulin costs in 2024, Medicare Part D Low Income Subsidy or Extra Help program is also seeing a revamp in requirements.

Extra Help allows low-income individuals to pay $0 premiums for Medicare Part D coverage and offers fixed copayments for prescription drugs.

This program will be expanded to those who fall between 135% and 150% of the federal poverty line and meet the predetermined resource limit requirements. In previous years, Extra Help was only available to those making less than $135% of the federal poverty level.

Advantage and Supplement Plans

Medicare Advantage (Part C) and Medicare Supplement (Medigap) plans may experience changes in coverage and costs at the beginning of the year. Beneficiaries should review their plan documents to understand any adjustments and assess whether their current plan still meets their healthcare needs. Exploring alternative plans during the Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) can be a wise decision to ensure optimal coverage. 

Preventive Services

January often brings updates to the list of preventive services covered by Medicare. This can include new screenings, vaccinations, and wellness programs. Staying informed about these additions allows beneficiaries to take full advantage of available preventive care services to maintain their health and well-being.

As January ushers in a new year, it also brings changes to Medicare that can impact beneficiaries' healthcare experiences. Staying informed about adjustments to premiums, deductibles, IRMAA, prescription drug coverage, Advantage, Supplement plans, and preventive services is crucial for navigating the evolving healthcare landscape. By proactively reviewing plan details and exploring alternative options during the Annual Enrollment Period, beneficiaries can ensure they are well-prepared for the year ahead, allowing them to focus on their health and well-being.