Letter: Medicare has granted itself a discount - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Letters To The Editor

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Letter: Medicare has granted itself a discount

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Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2014 3:56 pm

I found out Feb. 11 that since April 2013, Medicare granted itself a 2 percent discount from doctors and medical providers with a contract with Medicare. They then sent AARP United Healthcare a form with the full payment so my supplemental insurance also did not pay the 2 percent. Meanwhile, the discrepancy had a note that local state and federal law required an adjustment.

Only contacting Mayo Clinic did I get any help. They had been told it was “the sequester.” I did not get a notice from anybody! I find this untrustworthy behavior on the part of AARP, United Healthcare and even Consumer’s Union, which had a web place where people could find out if the Health and Human Services, Affordable Healthcare was affecting their insurance.

THEN in October Medicare stopped paying even the non-Medicare providers during the “FURLOUGH.” The doctors think patients know about this, but since they are forbidden from billing us, we don’t find out.

I have called my congressman twice, Medicare twice, United Healthcare twice (I can’t believe I hollered at the first woman who seemed to know nothing about the “SEQUESTER,” much less furlough).

Going back to April 1 through September, I have copied the summary notices. United Healthcare needed the forms resubmitted since Medicare sent them the wrong ones. Two percent seems like a negligible write-off, but an employer with 100 employees, will need to lay off two. That explains why Hospice has laid off a nurse. Hospice blames Medicare, which I didn’t understand before. Doctors have said, “Why does Obama hate the elderly?” “I have been offered to teach in a prestigious medical university.” Doctors have been receiving less pay for several reasons. I didn’t know about this. I pay a lot for Supplemental Insurance and have trusted that deductibles and co-pays have been paid. Matching up payments for each visit and procedure, I have notes going back to April 1, 2013. Now I wonder if I was given the wrong information from United Healthcare for submitting the forms myself. The Medicare person said they would not go back and redo anything.

I checked for fraud with each notice, and this comes close to that. Increasing Medicare premiums 2 percent would have gotten a lot of attention. I feel like the frog in the pot, gradually getting boiled to death.

Marie Fordtner

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