Volume 40 | Issue 154
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has announced the 2018 Medicare Part A and B premium, deductible, and coinsurance amounts. There is a small increase in Part A amounts, and while the standard Part B premium will not increase in 2018, some Part B enrollees protected by a “hold harmless” provision in 2017 will pay more. The Part B deductible will not increase for any beneficiaries. The 2018 Medicare Part D parameters were released earlier this year. (See our May 15, 2017 For Your Information.)
Medicare Part A
On November 17, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced the Medicare Part A premium, deductible and coinsurance amounts for 2018, and provided a fact sheet with additional background.
Approximately 99% of Medicare beneficiaries do not pay a Part A premium because they have at least 40 quarters of Medicare-covered employment. For those individuals who pay a premium, the Medicare Part A premiums for the 12-month period beginning on January 1, 2018 are as follows:
|Premium to purchase coverage for individuals who are not otherwise eligible for Medicare Part A and certain disabled individuals||$422||$413||2.2%|
|Premium for certain individuals entitled to a reduced monthly premium (who had at least 30 quarters of Medicare-covered employment or were married to someone with at least 30 quarters of Medicare-covered employment)||$232||$227||2.2%|
Deductible and Coinsurance Amounts
The Medicare Part A deductible and coinsurance amounts for the 12-month period beginning on January 1, 2018 are as follows:
|Deductible and Coinsurance Type||2018||2017||Change|
|Deductible for up to 60 days of Medicare-covered inpatient hospital care||$1,340||$1,316||1.8%|
|Daily coinsurance for 61st through 90th day of hospitalization||$335||$329||1.8%|
|Daily coinsurance for lifetime reserve days||$670||$658||1.8%|
|Daily coinsurance for 21st through the 100th day of extended care services in skilled nursing facility||$167.50||$164.50||1.8%|
Medicare Part B
The standard monthly premium for Medicare Part B will not increase in 2018.
|Standard monthly premium||$134||$134||0.0%|
About 70% of Part B enrollees benefit from a “hold harmless” provision that protects them from any increase in Part B premiums (typically deducted from Social Security checks) that would effectively reduce their monthly Social Security payments. These Part B enrollees had their Part B premium capped at an average of about $109 for 2017. (See our November 30, 2016 For Your Information.) CMS estimates that for 2018, 42% of Part B enrollees will pay less than the $134 standard premium due to the hold harmless provision. The provision was triggered because the cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for Social Security benefits in 2018 will be 2.0%, (see our October 13, 2017 For Your Information) and an increase in the Part B premium to $134 would reduce the net benefit Social Security payment for these Part B enrollees.
Who is not protected by the “hold harmless” provision?
- New Medicare enrollees in 2018
- Higher-income Medicare beneficiaries
- Medicare beneficiaries dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid
- Medicare Part B enrollees not receiving Social Security benefits
The 30% of Social Security recipients not subject to the hold harmless provision will pay a minimum of $134 a month for Part B coverage in 2018. Medicare beneficiaries with higher incomes pay a larger portion of their Medicare Part B premium amounts based on a predetermined formula.
The 2018 Medicare Part B monthly premiums based on income tax filing status and income are:
|Individual Filing Status||Married Filing Jointly Status||2018 Monthly Premium||2017 Monthly Premium||Change|
|Income up to $85,000||Income up to $170,000||$134.00||$134.00||0.0%|
|$85,001 – $107,000||$170,001 – $214,000||$187.50||$187.50||0.0%|
|$107,001 – $133,500||$214,001 – $267,000||$267.90||$267.90||0.0%|
|$133,501 – $160,000||$267,001 – $320,000||$348.30||$267.90||30.0%|
|$160,001 – $214,000||$320,001 – $428,000||$428.60||$348.30||23.1%|
|More than $214,000||More than $428,000||$428.60||$428.60||0.0%|
Comment: The increase in the Part B premium rates for some individuals with higher incomes is a result of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015, which increased the amounts that higher-income enrollees must pay for coverage under Medicare Parts B and D starting in 2018. See our For Your Information from May 29, 2015.
|Married Filing Separately, Lived with Spouse During Tax Year||2018 Monthly Premium||2017 Monthly Premium||Change|
|Income up to $85,000||$134.00||$134.00||0.0%|
|More than $85,000||$428.60||$428.60||0.0%|
Finally, the Medicare Part B deductible for the 12-month period beginning on January 1, 2018 will remain at $183.
|Medicare Part B||$183||$183||0.0%|