What is Medicare?
Medicare is a federal health insurance program for people 65 and older and certain younger people with disabilities and people with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). You can sign up for Medicare 3months before your 65th birthday month and three months after your 65th birthday month. There are a few exceptions to this rule.
Medicare Parts: 4+
Parts A and B are considered Original Medicare. Part A is free, and Part B has a monthly premium ($134 in 2018) which is either deducted from your Social Security check or paid quarterly if not collecting Social Security.
Part A covers hospital benefits, and Part B covers physician services, inpatient and outpatient medical and surgical services and supplies, physical and speech therapy, diagnostic tests and durable medical equipment.
Deducted from SSA check
Medically-necessary and preventive services
Parts A & B provided by a private insurer
Optional extra with Part C
Uncovered expenses, e.g., copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles
When you become eligible, Medicare enrollment windows open. However, some of these windows close quickly, so if you wait too long to sign up, you may have fewer choices or pay more.
While on Medicare, you have the annual enrollment period for changing coverage. The yearly window is from October 15 to December 7. There are also special enrollment periods for certain events, like moving to another state, or if you retire after you’re 65 and lose your employer coverage, or if you have a qualifying disability like ALS or ESRD.
Take time to consider your needs
Deductibles, copayment, and coinsurance are cost you have to consider, so it’s essential to truly understand your personal needs. Meeting with a Medicare expert 4-6 months before your 65th birthday, or before any special enrollment period, can help you customize your coverage choices and make good decisions about supplemental insurance.
Have an action plan
The important thing is to take the time to get educated on Medicare timelines and choices. Only then can you have an action plan. And remember, we’re always here to help you with sound advice and counsel. Just contact us.
Medicare Advantage plans are offered by private insurance companies to help cover what Medicare doesn't pay under Part A and Part B. In some cases, an Advantage plan can include additional benefits, like prescription drug coverage.
Medicare Advantage vs. Medicare Supplement
Medicare Supplement insurance, called Medigap, is a separate policy designed to pay for certain healthcare expenses not covered by Part A and Part B. It is not to be confused with Medicare Advantage - they are very different insurance plans with distinct benefits.
Choosing between Medigap and a Medicare Advantage plan takes research. Costs and benefits vary.
· Monthly Premium
· Doctor and healthcare facility restrictions
· Overall benefits
· Your anticipated costs based on your situation
· Prescription drug coverage and cost as it relates to your medication usage
We can help you sort out these personal circumstances so you can determine which additional coverage best fits your needs.
30-day Free Look Period
You have a 30-day period after the new policy arrives to change your mind. If you find a better plan, you can cancel the first policy for a full refund. This often happens when busy people don’t take the time to wade through all the rules and policies of Medicare enrollment, to find out later from a friend or colleague that they may have made the wrong choices. The best way to avoid changing plans during the free look period is to talk to a Medicare expert before enrolling or changing your plan.
What Indiana Insurance Alliance?
We are an Indiana business owned by Medicare Plan specialist Kurt Jones, a licensed insurance agent offering services only in Indiana. Kurt’s experience working with seniors’ health insurance plans taught him this:
Medicare language can be challenging, making it difficult for people to understand how to make the right choices.
Our role is to help beneficiaries and their caregivers make informed decisions about Medicare and Medicare options in a clear, concise and honest manner. We represent most Indiana insurance companies. We are able to educate you with objective and unbiased advice so you can choose plan options that best suit your particular needs and budget.
Your plan choices don’t have to be permanent. We check in with you once a year during the open enrollment period October 15 – December 7 to see whether your health needs have changed. This personal care gives you the opportunity to reassess your current plan and make any needed changes.
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Contact: IndianaInsurance Alliance