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The Nation

The one-time deductible that Medicare beneficiaries will have to pay out of their own pockets if hospitalized next year will be $560, the Department of Health and Human Services announced. That is an increase of $20 from this year and goes along with a $3.10-per-month rise in the optional Part B premium that helps pay doctor bills. Because of new provisions in the catastrophic health insurance law that will take effect Jan. 1, there will be only a one-time hospital deductible for Medicare beneficiaries next year no matter how many times they might be hospitalized. Under existing law, the deductible--$540 in 1988--could be charged for each hospitalization.


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