Changes In Private Fee For Service (PFFS) Medicare Plans For 2010

Many private fee for service Medicare plans will be pulling out of the market in 2010. This is due to the budget cuts and new regulations put in place by our Federal Government.

However, there is no need to panic, since there are many great alternatives available. Many of the larger companies are gearing up to offer Preferred Provider Organization Plans (PPO) for 2010. A PPO plan has a network of providers to choose from but also allows the patient to use an out of network provider as an option. Using an out of network provider however, will usually cost the patient more. This is usually done in the form of a higher copayment (a pre-set fee) or co-insurance (a percentage of the bill).

By choosing the correct plan, a consumer can literally save thousands of dollars per year. Here Are just a few tips for choosing a good plan.

  • Make A list of your regular doctors and specialists and find out which plans they accept.
  • Make sure a plan has a set Copayment rather than Coinsurance (if possible)
  • Be sure to compare the hospital copayments of the various plans (some can be very expensive)
  • Determine if hospital copays are per day or per stay
  • Be sure to find out if you need a Regional or Local PPO plan to fit your specific needs

You will usually have an easier time of it if you get advice from a licensed insurance broker but you will want to make sure the broker offers more than one company to choose from (otherwise they may be more of a salesman rather than an advisor).

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