If you are planning to retire at the age of sixty-five, then you are lucky enough to be eligible for Medicare. Your health becomes particularly important when you have put on a succession of years. You may start to suffer from cognitive impairment. This means an increase in visits to the doctor’s office.
Therefore one should start planning early on about their health costs. Medicare supplement insurance is a good way to ease the burden of having to pay regular medical bills. However, you need to understand the different premium needed to be paid every month.
It is good to note that Medigap is offered by different private insurance companies. This means that, although they offer the same Medigap Plans, they may vary in terms of price.
Original Medicare Part A and Part B
More often than not, employees receive Original Medical Coverage. This automatically makes them qualified for Medicare Part A and B. Here is a breakdown of both of the Plans
Medicare Part A benefits, coverage, and costs
Medicare Part A usually covers hospital charges when you visit the hospital. However, it is good to note that it does not cover charges you receive from doctors. That is the work of Part B.
Medicare Part A covers for:
- Special meals
- Nursing services
- Hospice care
- Operating room and recovery services
- Medical tests
- Rehabilitation services such as physical therapy
- Medical supplies received during inpatient treatment
If you have been working and paying Medicare for the past 10 years, then it means you do not have to pay for a premium once you retire. Moreover, if you have a spouse who has been paying for Medicare for the last 10 years, then you are also premium free.
If you do not qualify for a premium fee, then you have to pay $422 as per 2018. Moreover, if you require an inpatient treatment, then it means you have to pay $1,340 during the benefit period.
During benefit periods you not pay any coinsurance, deductibles, or copayments. This usually lasts for about 60 days. The rest of the days you will have to play for every Medicare Part A benefit. For instance, days 61-90, you will have to pay $335 coinsurance per day of each benefit period.
- Medicare Part B coverage, benefits, and costs
Medicare Part B covers all the outpatient services you receive at the hospital. This also includes doctor charges received. It also covers:
- Doctor visits
- Some preventive shots such as flu and hepatitis shots
- Clinical lab services such as blood tests
- Diagnostic tests
- Durable medical equipment such as a wheelchair and a diabetes testing monitor
- Mental health as an outpatient
- Emergency room services
Once you enroll for Part B it means you have to pay a monthly premium. However, the premium you pay depends on your situation.
For the most part, the premium is deducted from individuals who receive Social Security. For instance, in 2018, individuals were deducted $130 as a premium for Part B.
In some situations, you are prompted to pay more premium. This is especially if your monthly income exceeds a certain threshold. This mostly occurs if you are earning above $84,000. Moreover, you will be required to pay more if you did not sign up for Part B earlier.
Since Part B covers medical equipment, it is your part to pay an extra 20% of the cost covered by the equipment.
Medicare Advantage Plans (Medicare Part C)
Medicare Advantage Plans are also known as Medicare Part C. Although, you need to be enrolled for Medicare Part A and Part B for you to qualify for Medicare Advantage Plans. It’s important to be familiar with Medicare Advantage vs Original Medicare.
Medicare Part C usually covers what Part A and Part B cover (except hospice care). This means that all medical services, doctor visits, and hospital care are under one plan. There are also additional services, such as dental care, routine eye care, and prescription drug coverage.
Medicare Part C costs
Medicare Part C plans to set its own costs, thus the monthly premium will be different. This means that the coinsurance, deductibles, and copayments have their own premium.
You will need to choose a payment plan that suits your needs and benefits.
Tip: Medicare enrollment occurs for a seven month period. You should ensure you sign up for the coverage three months prior to your sixty-fifth birthday. If you miss your enrollment period, you will be penalized. This will include a 10% fee on every premium for the next 12 months.