Medicare is a federal health insurance program for individuals aged 65 or older and for individuals who meet specific requirements. Though Medicare can provide the much-needed coverage for healthcare expenses and services, there can be gaps in coverage. Before enrolling in a plan, it is important to ask some vital questions that can help you determine what to enroll in. In this article, we’ll examine the most important questions you need to ask about Medicare before you enroll.
Basics and Plan Features
Before you enroll, you should ask questions about the Medicare plans themselves. Medicare is divided into various parts. Medicare Part A and Part B are known as Original Medicare, and they have specific plan features and coverage options. There are other parts such as Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage), Part D (prescription drug coverage), and Medicare Supplements. By speaking with an experienced agent at Bobby Brock Insurance, you will be able to compare quotes from various insurance companies and understand what each plan can provide.
If you have other health insurance, ensure you ask and clarify if your current health plan will work with Medicare and which insurance will be considered primary or secondary. It would also be best to ask about the enrollment periods, how to register, the healthcare services covered by each part, and each plan’s average cost.
How Do You Qualify and Enroll?
Medicare plans have specific eligibility requirements and enrollment periods. To qualify for Medicare Part A and B (Original Medicare), you must be 65 or older. However, the Initial Enrollment Period starts three months before you turn 65 and ends three months after turning 65. It is possible to be automatically enrolled in Original Medicare, but if you are not, you will need to manually enroll during this period. If you do not do so, you will face late enrollment penalties. However, suppose you do have other creditable health and/or prescription drug coverage. In that case, it could be possible to delay your Medicare enrollment without facing penalties. This would qualify you for a Special Enrollment Period.
Other enrollment periods for Medicare include the General Enrollment Period, Annual Enrollment Period, and the Medigap Open Enrollment Period.
To qualify for Medicare Part C, D, and Medicare Supplement plans, you must be enrolled in Original Medicare.
Before enrolling, make sure you understand what you are eligible for and what enrollment periods would be appropriate for you to enroll.
What Does it Cover?
Each part of Medicare covers various healthcare services. For example, Original Medicare covers inpatient and outpatient healthcare services, while Part D provides coverage for prescription drugs. Before you enroll in a plan, you should ask about the coverage options. It is important to clarify if the coverage options will meet your healthcare needs or not. This means when deciding on coverage, you need to focus on your specific healthcare needs and what plan would fit those, rather than focusing on what a friend or family member has chosen for themselves.
If you need help determining what coverage would be best, an independent agent with Bobby Brock Insurance has the experience to help you find the right plan.
What Does it Cost?
Medicare plans have different costs. There are premiums, deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance rates. Before you enroll in a plan, ensure you ask about the costs you are to cover if you enroll and what medical expenses will be covered by Medicare. Some plans have high premiums and low deductibles, while some are the opposite.
Also, some programs may help cover some out-of-pocket costs associated with Medicare plans. Some are tailored to low-income individuals. If you think you will need the extra assistance, make sure to ask if you are eligible for these plans and how you can enroll.
We Can Help!
Medicare enrollment is a process you should navigate carefully, and asking important questions will help you ensure you get the plan you need at a cost you can afford. For more information, contact us today at (662) 844-330.