So, you are about to turn 65 years of age. The big elephant in the room is “Have you researched Medicare?”. If not, it is likely you are doing so right now. If you are wondering how to get ready for Medicare, we can help! In Home Care Advisors would like talk about the top things you should know about Medicare. You have Medicare coverage choices. It is important to be informed on what those choices are. We hope that this article will allow you to continue to be more independent in your senior years. Understanding what is covered and what is not through Medicare, and the different types of Medicare plans (A, B, C & D) will allow you to make more informed decisions. These decisions are ones that can affect your health, finances and overall wellbeing.
One of the best ways to learn ‘How To Get Ready For Medicare’ is to learn the facts!
FAQ’s about Medicare
- When does Medicare Start?
You are either automatically enrolled on your 65th birthday or can sign up for Medicare 3 months before your 65th birthday and 4 months into your 65th year of life.
- When is Medicare Enrollment Automatic?
If you have been paying Medicare Payroll Taxes and are getting Social Security, on your 65th birthday you will be automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A & B.
- Do I need to Sign Up for Medicare?
If you are not getting Social Security in anyway, you will then have to physically sign up for Medicare in the timeframe mentioned above. If you missed that time frame, no need to worry, Medicare open enrollment is during Jan 1st and March 31st of every year. This allows people to sign up even years after they turn 65, but you may have to pay a penalty. Also, if you are enrolling in the open enrollment period, it is important to keep that in mind that your coverage will go into effect July 1st of that year and not immediately.
What are the types of Medicare?
There are 4 types of Medicare
- Part A Medicare – Helps cover the costs of Impatient Treatments & Care as well as some In Home Care Services.
- Part B Medicare – Helps cover the costs of Outpatient Treatments & Care, as well as some In Home Care Services.
- Part C Medicare (Also known as Medicare Advantage) – This is a privately-owned option that usually offers more coverages (commonly vision & hearing) and an out of pocket expense cap.
- Part D Medicare – Prescription drug coverage.
What are the Pros & Cons of the different Medicare types?
Medicare Part A & B –
- Pros: Premiums based on Monthly Income, Coverage available at any office that Accepts Medicare, Helps cut the Costs of Traditional Healthcare visits & treatments.
- Cons: There are Premiums, Co-pays, there is No cap on Out-Of-Pocket expenses, does Not include Drug Coverage, Penalty for not Signing up at age 65.
Medicare Part C –
- Pros: Greater Coverage Possibilities, More Plan Options because it is Privately-Owned, there is a Cap on Out-Of-Pocket Expenses.
- Cons: Premiums are usually Higher, You must find a Provider that accepts your Specific Plan (not just Medicare), Because they are privately owned each plan has different coverages and limitations, so it is important to pick a plan that meets your health needs specifically.
Medicare Part D –
- Pros: Helps cover Prescription Drug Costs, Coverage Available any place that Accepts Medicare.
- Cons: Premiums, Copays, and other ongoing costs, does not cover all prescribed drugs, can Affect Coverage of Existing Healthcare Plan, Applying for Part D will Disenroll you, if you currently have Medicare Advantage (Part C Medicare) and vice-versa.
Understand How to get ready for Medicare & Use it Wisely
There is no master plan that fits all. Your health history and status play a major role in which type of Medicare plan(s) will work for you. The one thing we can tell you is that understanding Medicare is a critical aspect of aging independently. Yes, we all wish we could trust everyone we encounter. However, if there is one thing these years have taught us it is that’s not a likely probability. And in the end, you and your family are the ones left with the bill. This is something we can prevent, so we share!