Do I need Medicare?

Medicare is for 3 basic groups of people.

  1. People ages 65 and older.
  2. People under age 65 with certain disabilities.
  3. People of all ages with end-stage renal disease.

For today, we’re going to assume you are in the first group.

Most people enroll around their 65th birthday. You can enroll during the 3 months before your birth month, the month of your birth and 3 months after that month giving you a 7 month initial enrollment period. Depending on when you enroll, coverage can start as early as the month of your 65th birthday.

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Types of Medicare

There are four types of Medicare: Medicare Part A, Medicare Part B, Medicare Advantage Plans and Medicare Part D.

Medicare Part A

Medicare Part A helps cover inpatient care in hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, and hospice and home health care. Generally there is no monthly premium if you qualify and paid Medicare taxes while working.

Medicare Part B

Medicare Part B helps cover medical services like doctors’ services, outpatient care and other medically necessary services that Part A doesn’t cover. You need to enroll in Medicare Part B and pay a monthly premium determined by your income, along with a deductible.

Medicare Advantage Plans

Medicare Advantage plans require that you have original Medicare Parts A & B.  It provides coverage though provider networks also called HMOs, PPO, and MSAs.  Medicare Advantage Part C basically replaces original Medicare Parts A and B and can include coverage for Medicare Part D.  The key benefit is that Medicare Advantage plans include a maximum out of pocket feature to help you control costs.

Medicare Part D

Medicare Part D is prescription drug coverage and is available to everyone with Medicare. It is a separate plan provided by private Medicare-approved companies, and you must pay a monthly premium.

Trust UNICO to answer the complicated questions like:

  • Should I enroll in Medicare Parts A & B now or remain on my current group health plan?
  • If I remain on my current group health plan, is the prescription drug benefit portion of that plan “creditable” by federal definition or will I face a future penalty?
  • If I enroll in Medicare, should I use a Medicare Supplement and separate Prescription Drug card or a Medicare Advantage Combination plan?
  • I have Medicare NOW. Am I spending too much in premium?
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