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Casey Schwarz

Senior Counsel, Education & Federal Policy

Early Analysis Shows Flat to Decreasing Heath Care Utilization and Spending During the Coronavirus Crisis

At the start of the pandemic, estimates about the impact of the COVID-19 public health emergency, and related economic crisis, on health care spending diverged widely. Some experts predicted increased health care costs due to the expense of treating patients with the novel disease, while others anticipated reduced spending as a result of lockdowns and the deferral of non-emergent procedures and treatments.

As COVID-19 Vaccines Approach, Governments Gear Up for Distribution

This week, the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) released an analysis of different state government plans for COVID-19 vaccine distribution. Current projections show that a limited number of COVID-19 vaccine doses may start to become available as early as December, with more doses available over time.

2021 Part B Premiums Announced

Last week, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced the Part B premiums and deductible amounts for 2021. Medicare Part B covers physician services, outpatient services, some home health services, durable medical equipment (DME) and some other medical services.

Litigation Around Public Charge Rule Continues

A court case that may invalidate controversial changes to immigration rules has had two developments this week. The case, which challenges changes that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) made to the “public charge rule,” is one of several that have been brought asking courts to review the policy.

Assess Your Medicare Coverage During Fall Open Enrollment

Each year, during Fall Open Enrollment (October 15 through December 7), people with Medicare have the opportunity to make certain changes to their coverage, including switching prescription drug plans or between Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage (MA).