Medicare options can be very cumbersome and confusing for many people. We strive to assist customers in making the decision that is most appropriate for their budget and circumstances. We have been assisting customers with Medicare Supplement plans, Medicare Advantage plans, and Medicare Prescription Drug Plans for many years.
New to Medicare – Where do you Start?
One of the first places that you can start researching your options is to speak with an agent, but if you are the type of person that likes to do your own research here are some good resources for you:
From the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services: Choosing a Medigap Policy
This publication will help you understand the differences between Part A, Part B, Part C and Part D plans as well as Parts F through N, which are your traditional supplements.
There are two traditional paths that virtually ever consumer will take:
Path 1: They will enroll in Parts A and B (through the government) and then select Medicare Advantage plan that will administer your part A and B (and most include part D). The advantage to this path is that most Medicare Advantage plan are $0 premiums, but some do have premiums. Enrolling into a Medicare Advantage Plan allows the consumer to have some out of pocket limit caps that they don’t get by just having Part A and Part B alone, along with the extras that the plan puts in. These are good plans for consumers on a limited budget, consumers that just don’t want to pay premiums, or for people that are under 65 and have Medicare due to disability.
Path 2: They will enroll in Parts A and B (through the government) and then they will purchase a Medicare Supplement plan. Most consumers that do this chose Plan F, so we will focus on this aspect. The typical Plan F for a person that has just turned 65 is typically between $110 to $130 per month. A Plan F supplement will cover all Medicare covered excess expenses such as the 20% cost sharing for Part B and the Part A deductibles. The advantage to a Plan F (or other similar supplement plans) is that you have a predictable cost every year. You don’t have to worry about your typical cost sharing or deductibles. For consumers that like security and don’t like unexpected expenses than this is an option to consider. This would be a plan that someone with chronic high cost medical conditions should highly consider as well. When you chose the Plan F route you will also have to look at separate Part D options though.
What about Prescription Drugs?
If you enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan than many of these plans include that coverage, but you will want to double check to make sure. If you enroll into a supplement plan, such as a Part F, then your agent should be able to go over your Part D (drug) options with you. If you want to start doing research on your own, then by far the best place to start is on www.medicare.gov where they have a prescription drug calculator for you.
When do I get my Part A and B coverage?
There are several methods to enroll into your Part A and B coverage:
- Apply online at Social Security.
- Visit your local Social Security office.
- Call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213.
When you’re first eligible for Medicare, you have a 7-month Initial Enrollment Period to sign up for Part A and/or Part B. For example, if you’re eligible when you turn 65, you can sign up during the 7-month period that begins 3 months before the month you turn 65, includes the month you turn 65, and ends 3 months after the month you turn 65.
If you need answers or help call us at anytime
We are appointed with several carriers to assist consumers with their options. If you would like assistance please call us at any time at 800-401-5695 or you can contact me directly at Ron@NemetzInsurance.com