November 22, 2021
Medicare Premiums to Take a Big Bite out of Social Security’s 5.9% COLA in 2022
The standard monthly Medicare Part B premium in 2022 will rise to $170.10 from $148.50 in 2021 – a 14.55% jump and more than double what had been expected.
A Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) official told CNN that $10 of the $21.70 increase was due to the price of the new Alzheimer’s drug Aduhelm. CMS has not yet determined whether Medicare will cover the drug, which costs $56,000 per year per patient, and could cost Medicare $29 billion in just one year.
The price of Aduhelm is just one potential issue with the new drug. The FDA’s approval raised many questions and concerns about the process, the drug’s efficacy and its price tag. Several congressional committees are looking into the approval process, and the agency’s inspector general is reviewing it.
“It is mind-boggling that one drug is so expensive that millions of seniors are being hit by a huge spike in their Part B premiums,” said Joseph Peters, Jr., Secretary-Treasurer of the Alliance. “Our work to lower drug prices is far from over.”