Health Benefits Medicare Advisors
You are most likely receiving a ton of information about Medicare as you approach your 65th birthday. It is very easy to quickly get lost in all the different plans, parts, and policy options. In addition, the choices that you make now can affect which options are available to you in the future. This is why speaking to a licensed, independent professional can help make sure you understand all your options prior to making a decision. Health Benefits Medicare Advisors is a no-cost health insurance broker.
There are zero added fees or costs for one of our brokers to assist you with your enrollment. In addition, our office is a completely separate third party. We can give you an honest opinion about the policies that you are considering and let you know the experience our clients have had. We can also help take you through the entire enrollment process, limiting the amount of time you spend making phone calls and doing paperwork. Below is an explanation about the various parts of Medicare to help get you started.
Parts of Medicare
There are generally 4 parts to Medicare. This is Parts A, B, C, and D. Each part has a different function and is either obtained from the federal government or a private insurance carrier. In addition, each part may have multiple policy options and cost structures within them. Here is a brief explanation of each part and how it works.
This is your hospital insurance. Part A comes from the federal government and most people will be automatically enrolled once they turn 65. Do not worry if you have other coverage that you plan on keeping after your 65th birthday. Generally, Part A doesn’t have a cost or premium that you need to pay. Part A only covers about 80% of your hospital bills. If you want to enroll in a plan that covers the other 20%, you will also need Part B first.
Part B is also obtained from the federal government and is the final piece you need before you can enroll with a private carrier. This part covers your doctor and physician expenses. Like Part A, it only pays for about 80% of those bills so you will want to have other coverage to help with those costs. Unlike Part A, Part B does have a monthly premium. The amount you owe depends on your IRMAA, which is short for Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amounts. The federal government looks at your tax returns from two years ago and uses that to determine your premium. Once you have enrolled in Part B, it is time to start shopping around for a private policy. You will have a small window to enroll in a plan so it is important to get started on this right away.
For now, don’t worry about Parts C and D. These are obtained from private insurance carriers and will be covered further down in the article. Depending on your choice of coverage, you may or may not need one of these parts.
The Next Step
Once you have Parts A and B, it is time to begin the process of shopping for additional coverage. This is where our office comes in. Health Benefits Medicare Advisors is an insurance broker licensed with the state of Nevada and is contracted with every insurance company operating in this state. Therefore, we can show you every different plan option and help you determine the best choice. We will also help complete applications and enrollments for you, ensure the carrier processes your request correctly, and be your point of contact in case anything goes wrong.
We help you with this process for no extra cost to you. The insurance company will pay your broker for your enrollment and does not increase your premium for you to take advantage of this. You are simply adding your own personal contact to help take care of your Medicare enrollment and be there for you all year long.
Now that you have Parts A and B from the government, it is time to find a policy to help cover the 20% that Original Medicare doesn’t cover. Original Medicare also does not provide any coverage for prescription drugs. There are two paths that you can choose to help fill in these gaps. This is either a Medicare Supplement or Medicare Advantage plan.
Medicare Supplement, also known as Medigap plans, cover the extra 20% Parts A and B do not cover. Generally, for a monthly premium, you can have 100% coverage of your doctor and hospital expenses besides a small Part B deductible. You will also add a national list of doctors. Just about every doctor in the United States that accepts Medicare will accept your supplement plan. You will be able to receive care outside of the state that you live in. Although, Medicare Supplement plans do not include drug coverage. You will need to add Part D, which is the next topic, to get prescriptions covered. If you decide you want to enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan, you do not need Part C of Medicare.
We will cover Part D before Part C. Part D is specifically prescription drug coverage. You can get this part 1 of 2 ways. You can either purchase it as a stand-alone policy or enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan (explained below) that includes drug coverage. Medicare’s website has a great tool to shop around for prescription plans. You can enter the names, dosage, and frequency of your drugs to find a plan that saves you the most money. Most Part D plans will have a premium that ranges from $15 to $50 a month depending on what drugs you take.
Part C is a Medicare Advantage plan and is the other route you can take besides enrolling in a Medicare Supplement plan. Medicare Advantage plans are known as an all in one package. This is because it offers coverage for hospitals, doctors, and prescription drugs. In addition, many plans throw in coverage for dental, vision, and hearing aid services. Most Part C plans offer all of these services for zero extra cost. Yes, this is correct, these plans really have a $0 monthly premium. I’ll explain why below.
Even though there is extra no cost for a Part C Medicare Advantage plan, you still have to pay your Part B premium to Social Security. The government will reimburse your Part C insurance carrier to cover you so in a way, your money will still reach the insurance provider. In addition, your Part C plan often has copays and coinsurance for your medicare services. Unlike Medicare Supplement plans where you only have a deductible, most Part C Advantage plans will require you to pay part of the bill each time you use the plan. This cost-sharing along with the reimbursement means the carrier does not need to charge you a monthly cost.
If you made it this far, congratulations! That was a lot of information! You may still have many questions. At Health Benefits Medicare Advisors, we would love to assist you with these questions and listen to your personal situation so we can help find a plan that is right for you. Please give our office a call or contact us if you would like help with your Medicare enrollment. We would be happy to assist you.