CMS announces 2017 premiums

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Friday, November 11, 2016

WASHINGTON – For about 70% of Medicare beneficiaries, the average monthly premium for Part B services will be about $109 in 2017, compared to $104.90 for the past four years, CMS announced Nov. 10.

Premiums for this group are protected from sharp increases by a statutory “hold harmless” provision designed to protect seniors, the agency says.

“This year, as in the past, the Secretary has exercised her statutory authority to mitigate projected premium increases for these beneficiaries, while continuing to maintain a prudent level of reserves to protect against unexpected costs,” CMS stated in a press release. “The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will work with Congress as it explores budget-neutral solutions to challenges created by the ‘hold harmless’ provision.”

For the remaining 30% of beneficiaries, the average monthly premium for Part B services will be $134 in 2017, a 10% increase from the premium in 2016, CMS says.

Beneficiaries not subject to the “hold harmless” provision include those who do not receive Social Security benefits, those who enroll in Part B for the first time in 2017, those who directly billed for their Part B premium, those who are dually eligible for Medicaid and have their premium paid by state Medicaid agencies, and those who pay an income-related premium, CMS says.