May 2014 General Meeting
Our special guest at the May 2014 meeting was Frank M. Winter.
Frank Winter works as the Partnership Manager in the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) New York Regional Office and is responsible for conducting outreach and building partnerships.
Frank was the primary presenter for a series of seminars on Part D sponsored by the Medical Society of the State of New York, planned CMS’s first Regional conference on Medicare Modernization for the Asian American Community, and collaborated with the Pharmacist’s Society of the State of New York to provide Continuing Medical Education on Medicare Part D to pharmacists throughout New York. He is a regular guest on India TV’s Medicare programming, as well as a frequent co-host on the Regional Office’s “CMS & You” program, and a member of the Regional Office training team.
The topic of the evening was “How To Manage Medicare in 2014″
Mr. Winter provided an Affordable Care Law primer and explained that all those covered by Medicare are not allowed to consider the purchase of any new insurance plans offered to other Americans as part of the new “Exchanges” available in each state within their online presence. Medicare enrollees have a system separate from the exchanges and are not at eligible to participate in the exchanges or to purchase insurance from the exchanges. Frank’s expertise was on display as he answered questions enthusiastically even as he had not yet finished his presentation.
Many of the attendees have Medicare as primary plus a Medigap supplement and provided positive feedback with respect to coordination of benefits.
Frank summarized the traditional Medicare program, (forever) penalties for failing to enroll once a person is qualified to enroll, Medigap supplement choices, and Medicare Advantage as a complete package and alternative to traditional Medicare.
Frank also explained the prescription drug benefit Part D’s coverage gap commonly referred to as the “doughnut hole” and how it was planned by CMS and Congress since 2007 that out of pocket medication expenses during the gap will be reduced over time.
The group had many questions for Frank Winter and he answered each one thoroughly showing expertise in the topic and great patience as he explained in detail both policy and strategies for negotiating and mastering the complicated system of all things Medicare.