When you near 65, you need to begin considering Medicare. You need to sign up about three months before your 65th birthday, but you can plan ahead for which options you will choose. Medicare is a set of insurance plans designed specifically for older Americans, but many people with disabilities and some people who have experienced kidney failure qualify.
The options bit refers to the parts of Medicare. The original plan includes Part A and Part B, but the updated Medicare also has Part C and Part D and Medigap (supplemental insurance). The latter comes from private insurance companies like Family Insurance Associates of Ruidoso, NM.
Through Social Security, you enroll in the original Medicare to obtain hospital and medical coverage. Part A covers hospital stays or short stays at a nursing home after a hospital stay. It also provides limited coverage for hospice or home health care. This comes free if you worked and paid Medicare taxes during your time as an employee. Part B covers doctor visits, outpatient and home health care, selected preventative services and some durable medical equipment. This you pay a premium to obtain.
Part C, also called Medicare Advantage, includes Part A and Part B coverages as well as dental, hearing, and vision insurance. It also provides prescription drug coverage. Everything comes in one bundle.
Part D provides prescription drug coverage. You might want to add D to A and B, but if you choose C, you do not also need A, B, and D because they are all in C.
The supplemental plans sold by private insurance companies still have to follow Medicare rules. The supplemental plans aka Medigap pay coinsurance, copays, and deductibles.
You only get a six-month window to apply. It begins three months before your 65th birthday and expires three months after it. If you do not jump on your registration for the coverage then, you must wait for a special enrollment period.
You can just accept the free Part A or apply for Parts A and B, but B comes with a premium. You can turn down B, then change your mind later, but you will pay more in premiums. For every 12-month period that you do not enroll in Part B, your premiums increase 10 percent. Each year, there is a general enrollment period from January 1 through March 31. Coverage does not start immediately but on July 1 of the same year. You can use Medicare with your employer’s insurance and your Health Savings Account (HSA).
So, Medicare is for those who have reached the age of 65 or have a disability. Part A comes free. All other parts cost money. Those who can afford Part C coverage obtain full medical coverage plus prescription medication coverage. You also add just Part B to get help with doctor visits or Part D to cover just prescription drugs. Your choices depend on your income.
Let Family Insurance Associates of Ruidoso, NM help you choose the Medicare plan that best suits your needs. While Medicare is eventually for everyone, the parts you need differ from those your neighbors might. Contact us today to make the right choice for your financial and medical future.