Take Responsibility for Your Own Work

For some, responsibility is empowering. For some others, responsibility is frightening, even debilitating. When you get right down to it, when it comes to your work and your responsibilities, you are responsible for everything. So if everything is your responsibility, then you’re the one who must do something to change the outcome from negative to positive. Problems don’t age well. Tiny monsters grow up to be giant monsters. You’re better off dispatching them before they become entrenched, and before they wreak havoc on your results. Be bold; be daring; be resolved to make the hard calls before someone else has to do it for you. You can do this. COLUMN

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Change Is a Noun and a Verb

Change is more difficult than you believe. Having intellectual understanding of the reason something needs to change isn’t enough. An emotional need to change is necessary, and more powerful. Change is psychological. You first have to have a shift in your mindset, your personal philosophy, your personal psychology. Without that shift, there will be no change. Change takes longer than you believe. It takes longer to sell, longer to build consensus and longer to execute before results are seen. Most change initiatives die not because the idea isn’t good or necessary, but because it was poorly executed. The change is usually poorly executed because it lacks executive engagement. Sometimes change initiatives fail because too many variables are changed at once. One major change might have been enough to produce a result, but because so much was attempted, nothing really changed. Change: it works.

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Medicare Plan Finder Being Updated

The CMS is planning to launch updates to its Medicare Plan Finder this month after a report from a government watchdog flagged significant usability concerns with the tool. The GAO analyzed the experience of comparing plans on MPF and found 58% of beneficiaries described the process as “difficult” while just 13% of beneficiaries said it was easy. “These selections can be difficult due to the Medicare program’s complexity, and can have important implications for beneficiaries’ out-of-pocket costs and access to providers,” the GAO said. This can limit a beneficiary’s ability to compare their options in traditional Medicare fully with Medicare Advantage plans, according to the report. The tool also lacks information on provider networks offered in M/A plans, which can also confuse the selection process, since it requires a beneficiary to visit individual plan websites to find that information.

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Part D Premiums Continue to Decrease

The average basic Medicare Part D premium for prescription drug plans is projected to decline, CMS announced. The announcement outlined a trend that’s extended over the past three years. Part D premiums decreased by 13.5% since 2016, saving beneficiaries around $1.9 billion. The actual average Part D premium in 2017 was $34.70. CMS projects that for 2020 the average Part D premium will decline to $30, a decline of around 13.5%.

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Medicare Spends 30% of All Drug $$ in U.S.

By the Kaiser Family Foundation – August 2, 2019

Prescription drug spending under Medicare now accounts for 30 percent of national retail spending on drugs, and nearly $1 out of every $5 in total Medicare spending. The majority of Medicare prescription drug spending is for drugs covered under Part D; Part B also covers drugs administered in physician offices.  ARTICLE

 

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