Our government websites for Medicare and Social Security are not as transparent as they could be! Case in point, Medicare rates for both Part B and Part D coverage for 2011 which were announced on 11/08/10.
Kiplinger published the schedule for rates for all income brackets in a handy chart form on 11/08/10, but their easy-to-follow format does not seem to be available on either the Medicare or Social Security websites.
First, the link for the Kiplinger article:
How Much You’ll Pay For Medicare in 2011
The Medicare website (http://www.medicare.gov/) provides 2011 Medicare rate information at the following link (not easily found!):
The Social Security website http://ssa.gov/ has a rate chart of sorts for 2011 Medicare rates, but it doesn’t correlate exactly with the chart provided by Kiplinger or on the Medicare website.
The link trail I followed on the Social Security website to learn Medicare 2011 premium rates:
All links on the Social Security website led to a chart that does not correlate with the Medicare website information.
There are 2011 Medicare rate changes for Medicare Part B enrollees based on length of enrollment time, and income. There are also rate surcharges for some enrollees in Medicare Part D coverage.
Once again, our Medicare and Social Security agencies are demonstrating a lack of transparency that is disconcerting, at best.
If Kiplinger was able to do such a good job of relaying rate information in an easy-to-follow format, why isn’t that type of information just as easy to access on our government websites?
It isn’t, but in my opinion, it should be.
Related articles by R.C. Johnson:
Medicare Part B Premium: Per the Dept. Of HHS – There May, or May Not, Be an Increase
The New Medicare Handbook Does Not Disclose 2011 Premium Cost