Medicare insurance is highly confusing, and getting all that material in the mail to “help” you doesn’t help. Even if you can stay awake while reading it, comprehending it is another story. Medicare is available to all people who have worked for more than 10 years and paid into the system. Part A which covers hospitalization, does not have a monthly premium once you are eligible. This was already paid through payroll taxes.
Medicare Part B does have a monthly premium and the amount is based on income and starts around $100 per month. This is either paid quarterly by check or deducted from one’s social security check each month. Most people prefer to have it deducted. Many people as “why isn’t my Part B free like Part A?” Medicare Part B actually pays 80 percent of your medical bills therefore it requires a monthly premium.
Upon turning 65 people have a six month period entitled the open enrollment period, which allows them to enroll in a Medicare supplement Plan with no medical underwriting. This is fantastic for people with health conditions who would normally be turned down for any insurance. During this time period you can enroll with no medical questions asked. Many people choose a Medicare Supplement Plan F, often called a Medicare Part F. With this plan you pay no coinsurance, no copays, and no deductibles. It offers 100 percent payment of the gaps in Medicare and is outstanding coverage for those wanting to supplement Medicare Part A and Part B.
People can also enroll in a Part D drug plan within 4 months of the month they turn 65. These plans have a monthly premium and some have deductibles. You then pay copays on your prescriptions, although some offer generic drugs for free. It is best to compare plans at Medicare.gov to see which plans will save you the most money, by entering your drugs into the plan finder tool.
Some people also choose to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan rather than stay with original Medicare. These plans are either HMOs, Private Fee for Service options, or PPO’s. They have networks and are managed care plans in which you must visit a participating doctor. There are usually copays attached and a monthly premium to be enrolled in one of these.
Knowing the various parts of Medicare can be of great use for those eligible for the coverage, and it’s always best to shop as many companies as possible for Part D drug coverage as well as a Medigap or Medicare Advantage Plan Option.