Government Benefits

Medicare Patients Beware!

Question:  My mom was in the hospital for three days and then transferred to a skilled nursing facility for recovery.  Why is Medicare refusing to pay for her stay in the nursing facility?

Senior Baby Boomers

In 2011, 2.5 million baby boomers – those born between 1946 and 1964 - became “senior citizens.” For many, Social Security, Medicare and veteran benefits provide special tools and options:

Social Security Retirement

Medi-Cal: A No-Interest Loan for Nursing Home Care

Because current costs for nursing-home care are incredibly high, more and more Californians are seeking financial support through Medi-Cal. Those who are eligible can receive the equivalent of a no-interest loan.  With it, Medi-Cal pays a portion of the patient’s monthly nursing home fees, while the patient’s continued income defines his or her monthly deductible or share of cost.

Affordable Care For Seniors

When Congress passed the Affordable Care Act, it ensured all Americans access to quality health care. For seniors, it provides Medicare protections and cost savings, including:

Free Preventive Care
Starting in 2011, Medicare provides full and complete coverage for:

Short-Term Medicare Coverage for Long-Term Care Needs

Many older adults think of Medicare as the insurance that will cover most of their future care needs. They are often surprised to learn that Medicare’s coverage for skilled nursing home care is quite limited. Specific rules determine if and when such coverage will start, continue and definitely end.

Working While Receiving Social Security

Many seniors who receive social security retirement (SSR) benefits are seriously considering returning to work. The very good news is that for most retirees, a new employment income will not impact their continued receipt of SSR benefits.

Aid & Attendance Benefits for Senior Veterans

Many veterans are surprised to learn that they, and certain family members, may be entitled to receive veterans’ retirement benefits through the VA pension or its Aid & Attendance (A&A) programs. Both programs provide financial support to low-income veterans aged 65 and above who served during specific periods of war. Surviving spouses of qualifying veterans may also be eligible to receive VA benefits.

Medicare Coverage for End-of-Life Care

Question: The doctor informed me that Mom’s illness is terminal and that, if she would like, Medicare will cover her hospice care needs. How is hospice care different from normal Medicare coverage?

Medicare Basics

In deciding whether you want to keep, switch or modify your current Medicare plan, here's a quick review:

Traditional or Original Medicare includes Parts A and B. Part A provides basic coverage for hospital care, while Part B covers doctor visits, other outpatient services and various medical supplies. Part A requires decreasing deductibles for the first 150 days of hospitalization, while Part B pays 80 percent of what Medicare defines as acceptable charges for approved treatment services.

Service-Connected Benefits For Those Who’ve Served

Many veterans who are currently experiencing severe medical problems do not know that they may be eligible to receive service-connected compensation benefits. To qualify, evidence must show that the veteran’s disease or injury started during active service or full-time duty in the Army, Navy, Coast Guard or other U.S. armed forces.

Although there are four categories of service-connected compensation benefits, the two most common are direct service connection and presumed service connection.

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