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Senior Contributor

Medicare Summary Notice

What do I do with all of these things?  My MIL keeps sticking them everywhere. I find some under the monthly file, some are in the back of the bank statement book, she probably has another pile somewhere else too. So do I really need to keep them? How long? It's rather upsetting to look at what the Hospital charges,  Medicare agrees to pay,   and the little medicare part B pays  meaning. .. they pay next to nothing for Health care.    Their perscription bill does not even come close to our health insurance premiums.    And between them they probably have over 15 perscriptions plus lots of OCT too.    Monthly DR. appointments  to multiple doctors. 

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7 Replies
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Senior Contributor

Re: Medicare Summary Notice

I put my MIL's in a three ring binder.  I guess if her daughter wants to look through them and compare to doctor bills, they are there. 

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Veteran Contributor

Re: Medicare Summary Notice

Are Dr.'s in your area refusing to treat Medicare patients. We are seeing this more and more here. What are the seniors suppose to do? The govenment takes money from their Social Securtiy for insurance, but apparently do not pay the Dr.'s in a timely manner, so many are not wanting them as patients. I am lucky that my Mom and Dad have a back up insurance anyway, I don't think they could survive on Medicare.

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Senior Contributor

Re: Medicare Summary Notice

Try to keep each person's Medicare summary for the same amount of time as you would a farm statement, maybe even longer. Sometimes the medical bills come out of the woodwork after a number of months. The Medicare summaries only come out every 3 months so it really shouldn't be too much paperwork. If you want to reduce the clutter, try scanning them into digital form. Biggest problem is keeping them separate as it is too easy to mix the two IL's paperwork together. I wouldn't want to be too dependent on someone else (the government) for my medical records.

Is this really about the Medicare statements or what your IL's are paying for services & products? Elderly tend to have more health problems than younger adults. Please hope that your DH doesn't fall into the same habits as his parents.

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Senior Contributor

Re: Medicare Summary Notice

There are insurance companies that are managing regular Medicare as well as participating in taxpayer subsidized Medicare Advantage plans. Are there similar problems with the doctors refusing the MA participants or only the regular Medicare patients? Then you have problems if the providers do not use the right codes for services that tend to get refused.

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Senior Contributor

Re: Medicare Summary Notice

I'm just wanting to know if I needed to keep them filed.    I was venting on how little medical providers are made to accept,  and then how little my in-laws ever pay.    Their biggest medical bills might be to the denist.     I know I should probably be checking them  but at the present time have no desire to be cross checking.  

Thanks for the suggestions and hints.  

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Senior Contributor

Re: Medicare Summary Notice

My mom just trashed hers  She can't stand any clutter.  Drives me nuts when she goes on about how much paper she has to deal with.  She'd be biserk with all these farm receipts.   

Yes, there is one dr. in our area who won't take medicare patients.  I think it could be real problem in the future.

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Advisor

Re: Medicare Summary Notice

What you are describing is pretty much par for the course in American healthcare, it seems.  Elders are a politically correct rationale for drug companies to make a mint...so much so, that there is a diagnostic term for people on so many medications: "Polypharmacy."

I saw this on patients' charts in the hospital and nursing home where we did clinicals.  When they get to this point, some of the meds are at least partially necessary to treat the side effects of others.  As I am sure you know, it can become a vicious cycle. 

After watching this prescription addiction of the medical establishment, I have become even more averse to receiving meds, unless truly necessary.  I will take one for a shortterm illness, like this last bronchitis bout, but insist on much more infomation now before filling one or taking a free sample. 

After learning about the GI bleed risk of my arthritis medication, I stopped taking it in the coldest part of the winter...usually when my pain is at its height.   I am not appreciably worse than I was when I was taking it, and I do not have to worry about developing holes in my stomach lining anymore. 

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