Medicare Part B - Coverage, Costs in 2017

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Medicare Part B

What does Medicare Part B Cover?

Medicare Part B is part of Original Medicare. Medicare Part B covers outpatient medical services such as doctor visits and preventive care like flu shots and diabetes screenings. Medicare Part A covers inpatient hospitalization services.

Some medical care services are not covered by either Medicare Part B or Part A. Dentures and dental care, vision care, long-term care, hearing aids, and routine foot care are not typically covered by Original Medicare (Part A and Part B).

How much does Medicare Part B Cost in 2017?

In 2017, the Medicare Part B premium is $134. This premium must be paid monthly. Individuals making higher incomes have to pay more for Medicare Part B. In fact, 30% of Medicare Part B subscribes will face a 10% increase in their base premium over 2016. People on Social Security will more likely pay less, $109 on average.

30% will face a 10% increase in their base premium from $121.80 to $134 per person per month. And the 6% of beneficiaries who pay a high income surcharge will pay a 10% increase in that surcharge, along with paying the higher base. Part B (the base and the surcharge) covers doctors’ and outpatient services.

If your annual income was...Your 2017 Medicare Part B Premium Will Be
Individual tax return filingMarried but filed separate tax returnJoint tax return filing
$85,000 or less $170,000 or less $85,000 or less $134.00
Above $85,000 up to $107,000above $170,000 up to $214,000Not applicable$187.50
Above $107,000 up to $160,000above $214,000 up to $320,000Not applicable$267.90
Above $160,000 up to $214,000above $320,000 up to $428,000above $85,000 and up to $129,000$348.30
Above $214,000 above $428,000 above $129,000$428.60

There are Medicare Savings Programs that can assist low-income individuals with Medicare costs.

If you don't sign up for Part B when you first become eligible, or if you drop Part B coverage and then renew it later, you may have to pay a late enrollment penalty for as long as you have Medicare. Your Part B monthly premium may be surcharged by 10% for each full 12-month period that you could have had Part B but did not have Part B coverage.

What is the Medicare Part B Deductible for 2017?

Medicare Part B has a deductible, that is to say, an amount that must first be paid by the enrollee for medical services prior to Part B contributing towards costs. In 2017, the Medicare Part B deductible is $183 a year.