The Smartest Purchase A Medicare Beneficiary Can Make

When we turn 65 and retire, we think about living a stable income and coming to the reality that there are some luxuries and “nice-to-haves” that we look forward to could and should forgo our later years. Maybe we’ll give up certain services that we paid while we were busy to allow ourselves more free time when we were not working. We are a little more aware of every new addition to our budgets and not only have to think about how to save money on such things as services, but we also need to protect ourselves from unexpected bills that could be impractical or even devastating for our savings budgets.

There is no doubt that top or bottom of the list is how we can ensure that we receive the medical treatment we want and / or need, and protect ourselves from the potentially large medical bills that may come with age. Let’s be honest; we are not getting any younger and as we get older, it’s just inevitable that at some point (and often unexpectedly) we’ll need serious medical care. With medical costs soaring, even a temporary stay in a hospital can cost tens of thousands of dollars.

Most of us are lucky that we have Medicare Parts A & B as our primary cover. Of course, we’ve spent almost all of our working life in the Medicare system and most of us will still pay at least $ 110 a month for Part B (2010). However, this is not much to pay for 80% coverage of medical bills after some small to medium deductibles for hospitalization and outpatient benefits. The problem is the additional 20% that are not covered. What is the best way to ensure that you are not exposed to this 20% (which in catastrophic situations can be tens of thousands of dollars – from which we want to protect ourselves) that you owe for medical expenses?

The two main categories people look at are Medicare Advantage plans or Medicare supplement plans. Get an Aetna 2019 supplement plan at

However, Medicare Advantage plans are not really as supplements … especially because they do not complement Medicare parts A & B. Medicare Advantage plans actually replace your Medicare Parts A & B and are required to have coverage that is at least as good or better than normal Medicare. The benefit (if you will) of these plans is that they usually cost less than Medicare supplements. They often include the Part D drug coverage and sometimes extra benefits such as tooth and / or eyesight. Sounds great on the surface, right?

Here’s the rub with Medicare Advantage plans. They typically have small networks … especially in rural areas. So you have to go to certain doctors and hospitals (and they may not be the ones you want to visit). In addition, the private insurance company can now decide whether medical treatment is necessary (note that this is for profit companies selling these plans). In addition, many beneficiaries find that the plan has some hitherto unnamed gaps in coverage that offer them coverage that is comparable only if they only have Medicare coverage. Remember, the plans only need coverage that is as good as Medicare or better.


Changes to Medicare Benefits and How It Can Affect Your Coverage

Each year, Medicare plans and programs are introduced with annual flexibilities and reforms known as Medicare benefit changes. A common feature of Medicare is the constant change. These Medicare benefits and Medicare changes are being introduced to provide better coverage and regulatory reductions. Medicare benefit changes may be seen in the cost of coverage, enrollment period, coverage, deadlines at which beneficiaries may make plan changes and coverage options.

Medigap is a typical example of the program. Medicare Part D covers the cost of prescription medicines, but if the beneficiary gets to the initial credit limit before the expiration of the period, the beneficiary is responsible for paying the additional costs. This is a coverage gap; To fill this gap, Medicare has introduced Medigap, which allows such recipients to cope with excess drug costs. Medicare offers similar programs with consistent benefits, but if these benefits change or affect coverage, this is still a debate and, consequently, the future of Medicare depends heavily on how well these reforms are handled.

How can your coverage be affected by changes to Medicare?

Although changes are made to provide better services, they cause many inconveniences. This is because these changes are not communicated to the recipients. When recipients try to change plans to better manage their health, they are prevented from doing so because of the recent changes to deadlines for changing plans. This would affect their coverage and end with cash payments or co-payments. Private Medicare providers are doing a better job of promoting and raising awareness of current performance changes, and so the public has begun to trust them more than the state Medicare initiatives.

New regulations will allow people to test run an Advantage Plan for about 3 months. If they are not satisfied, they can switch to another Medicare Advantage plan or opt for the original Medicare insurance. Congress has called for this flexibility in the 21st Century Remedies Act to accelerate healthcare innovation.

An expensive element of the Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit requires participants with expensive prescription costs to spend more for their medication after they attain a certain level of spending in one year. This creates a coverage gap – also known as “donut hole”. Once a beneficiary’s spending has reached a second threshold, they enter catastrophic reporting and pay far less. The donut hole, according to the Affordable Care Act, should be closed in 2020. However, the congressional spending bill will cover the donut hole for branded drugs in 2019. The gap will close for generics in 2020.

Therapy cap off

Beneficiaries of the original Medicare do not have to pay the full cost of outpatient physical, linguistic or occupational therapy, as Congress permanently removes the cap that has limited their coverage in the past.

Better information on 2019 medicare supplement plans is located

Medicare updates the manual that it sends to recipients in the fall. It will include flowcharts and checklists and flowcharts to facilitate coverage. It will be easier to use the Medicare Plan Finder online tool, and a better “coverage wizard” will assist participants compare the coverage and costs options between Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage.

Medicare continues to expand the availability of telehealth programs, where patients can talk to a doctor or nurse over the phone or over the Internet. In 2019, it will offer telemedicine services to people with end stage renal disease or stroke.

Things to Keep In Mind When Integrating Your Home Health Care With Medicare

Medicare can sometimes be confusing, especially when you mix up complicated health problems with the demand for medical supplies such as hospital beds or oxygen. While the insurance labyrinth is difficult to solve, an estimated 47.5 million people received this program in 2010, i.e. more than one-sixth of the country’s population.

Here’s a quick overview and answers to frequently asked questions about Medicare and home care.

  1. Who is qualified?

The 2019 Medicare supplement plan is a national health insurance program provided by the US government for those who:

– are 65 years and older

– are below 65 with certain disabilities

– are diagnosed with end-stage Renal Disease (ESRD), a form of persistent renal failure requiring kidney transplant or dialysis.

  1. What types of services does Medicare cover?

Medicare has four different coverage areas: Parts A, B, C, and D. The original Medicare comprises of Part A & part B. Part C is referred to as the “Medicare Advantage Plan.” The 4 parts are briefly summarized:

– Medicare Part A: Hospital Insurance

* Part A covers care in the hospital as well as health care in care facilities, home care and hospice.

– Medicare Part B: Health Insurance

* Part B includes doctor visits and visits to other health care providers. In addition, Part B includes hospital outpatient clinics, permanent medical equipment (such as intravenous infusion devices), and home health services. Part B also includes certain types of preventive services, such as certain vaccinations.

– Medicare Part C: Medicare benefit

* Part C combines health plan options you earn from other private health insurance companies approved by Medicare. Part C also integrates Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage (Part D) and can be tailored to include additional benefits at an additional cost.

– Medicare Part D: Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage

* Medicare-approved prescription drugs and its prescription is covered by Part D. It may reduce the premium of other medicines. Just like Part C, Medicare-approved private insurance companies also run Part D.

  1. Why do I have to choose between Medicare plans?

The choice of “Original Medicare” (Parts A & B) includes the payment of Part B monthly premiums and may require additional cover to pay deductibles and co-insurances to visit hospitals, see doctors, and other providers who will accept Medicare. Should you need prescription medication, you will need to join the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (Part D) and pay a monthly premium.

The “Medicare Advantage Plan” (Part C, which includes Parts A and B) requires, in addition to the Part B premium, the payment of monthly premiums and an additional payment to In-Plan Doctors, Hospitals. If prescription drugs are not covered by your additional coverage, you have the option to join the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (Part D).

As with prescription drugs, you can purchase additional coverage to cover benefits that are not covered by Medicare. The “Original Medicare” plan allows for the option to buy Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) while the “Medicare Advantage Plan” does not.

It is advisable to always check if you can take advantage of any other additional insurance cover provided by your employer, union, or military.

A Look At The Cost Of Medigap

Across the country, Medigap plans are standardized, but the cost structure of Medigap is not standardized. Sometimes there could be huge variations in the premium for the same pension plan. This is because every insurance company decides the price structures for their different policies.

In general, these are the main categories of plans:

  1. Attained- Age Policy: With this policy, premiums start at a much lower price than the other two. However, their costs increase every three to five years – sometimes even faster. In later years, it could be a lot more expensive than the other options. It can also be harder for you to switch policies because of the rising monthly premiums.
  2. Issue-age policies: Here the price of the premium depends on your age at the time of purchase. The lower your age, the lower your premium Medigap costs. This policy is not subject to any increases with the age of the beneficiary.
  3. Community-related Plan: It is similar to the issue-age policy as the costs are the same for all members of a given community regardless of age. Even the premiums do not increase as you get older.
  4. 2020 supplement quotes at

The age and community policies start with higher premiums than the retirement pension policy, but the long-term advantage is that they do not experience price increases due to age.

There are other factors that also affect the Medigap cost. Healthcare inflation is an example. Inflation is almost inevitable and affects all types of insurance policies. Other factors that influence premium costs include the results of your medical risk assessment, geographic location, and any available discounts. In addition, registering for a policy during the six-month open registration may be more cost-effective as you have more choices and the insurer cannot refuse cover for you due to health issues or for an additional fee.

In order to get the best plan, it is advisable that you look around and explore the options available. First determine which coverage you want. Your National Insurance Office can give you a list of insurance premiums. Alternatively, you can browse the personal plan finder on Medicare’s websites or purchase a copy of the Weiss Ratings Supplement Insurance ‘Shoppers’ Guide.

Next, make sure you understand the pricing structure of each insurance company. Keep in mind that superior plans offer more benefits, but your Medigap costs will be higher. You should also compare the acquisition cost with the long-term cost. In general, we recommend that you choose an issue or community-based policy. It may be more expensive initially, but at least you can lock the premium so that it does not increase with your age.

In terms of community-related or issue-age policies, it is better to go with their cheapest package as you will not always get good value for money with the higher priced ones.

The author’s cost for a Plan F Medigap Police was $ 145 as at the year 2013. Plan F is a good cover and should protect your savings if you have a long-term illness.


Medicare Planning

If you have already received social security benefits, the federal agency that operates Medicare will contact you a few months before you qualify. Otherwise, you should register three months before your 65th birthday, even if you are not retired and you do not want to retire in the near future. There are also certain special cases in which you can apply before the age of 65. These include government employees who become disabled before the age of 65, or those with permanent kidney failure. Once you sign up, you will receive a Medicare card that indicates which parts gives you coverage.

If you are eligible for Part A for the first time, you have a seven-month period to register for Part B. If you delay the application, you will eventually have delayed coverage and higher charges. However, you have the option of enrolling in the general registration period each year, which starts from 1 January to 31 March. Your Part B coverage will start on the 1st of July of the year you sign up.

Best Medicare Supplement Plans 2020

Considering the possibility of higher costs, why would you not sign up immediately? The most popular reason is that you already have health insurance that you want to keep. While hospital insurance (part A) is free for almost everybody, health insurance (part B) comes with a monthly premium.

You need to measure whether the extra coverage is worth the added monthly cost. There is no right answer to this question; It depends on your personal situation and the type of insurance you already have. Talk to an insurance agent to see how your private plan and Medicare Part B work together. This is especially important for those who fall under a family policy. It is also important to note that neither private health insurance nor Medicare usually covers long-term care or nursing home. These needs should be planned separately. For those who choose to delay participation in Part B, those with employer plans have a special registration period. The special registration period allows you to record part B at any time while still covered by the group health plan and up to eight months after termination of employment or group coverage (whichever comes first) without penalty.

Get a 2020 supplement plans at

If you choose Medicare Part A and Part B, you can purchase Medigap, a Medicare supplement policy. Medigap is a private insurance policy that helps pay for some of the healthcare costs that Medicare does not cover, such as: Co-payments and deductibles. Medigap is different from a Medicare Advantage Plan (part C) and cannot be used if you are covered by part C.

Medicare Advantage plans are a way to get Medicare Part A and B benefits through private insurance while Medigap supplements the cost of your original Part A and B benefits with Medicare. There are 14 Medigap policies lettered A through N. Medigap Plan A offers the least coverage, while Plan N provides the most coverage.

Medigap vendors can typically use the medical risk assessment to decide whether to accept your application and how much you need to pay for your policy.



Reasons for not fearing Medicare

Shifting from employers insurance to Medicare can be intimidating. It might seem like a cumbersome job to look for policies and find the one suitable for it. Medicare is one of the biggest insurance programs and hence is safe and secure.

Here are a few reasons for trusting Medicare:  Find out more at

Huge Network:

Most of the physicians participate in Medicare. All healthcare providers, doctors, and Insurance companies are integrated together under this system. All the same, providers are available even if a person has applied for Medicare supplement plans as it does not matter if the Medicare insurance provider and Medicare supplement plan insurance provider are different. Moreover, all the doctors under Medicare will provide treatment irrespective of the Medigap insurance company.

Medicare supplement plans 2019

Medicare and travel:

People travel extensively after retirement. Most of them spend months in different states to visit and spend time with their children and grandchildren. It is more common among people who have families living in different states. But this does not pose a problem because the Medicare and Medicare supplement plans are national social programs and can be put to use anywhere. The only problem could be if the person has Medicare advantage subscription because it usually has network restrictions and treatment received outside the permitted location might not be covered under the policy. But any other policy including the Medigap plans does not pose location restrictions.

No referrals necessary:

Under certain policies such as the HMO it is necessary to get a referral from a doctor to get treated by a specialist but when it comes to Medicare, referrals are not necessary. The subscriber has the liberty to choose any specialist to get treatment. Only certain services might require authorization so that maximum coverage could be ensured. Moreover, the liberty to choose the insurance provider is also beneficial.

Maximum coverage:

Plan F covers all of the expenses. Medicare original plans may not be able to cover copayments or deductibles. But the Medicare supplement plans cover the rest of the cost and relieving the subscriber from paying even one dime. Since plan F is will be no longer sold from 2020, Plan G might be the next option as it offers the exact same benefits except for an annual part B deductible to be paid.

Medicare and Pre-existing conditions:

Pre-existing conditions mean that the person has health issues prior to shifting to any plan. There might be a worry among such people that these pre-existing conditions might not be covered if they transition to Medicare. However, this is not true. Medicare Parts  A and B cover it and there is no waiting period. It is, however, necessary to enroll in some Medicare supplement plan so that the benefit continues.

Convenient Way to Manage the Health Care by Medicare Supplement Plans with Complete Medical Coverage

The life insurance is an integral part of every individual of this generation. The insurance companies are introducing many policies for every section. These policies help and support in many ways in order to maintain the balance and betterment in life. The growing competition and stress are leading people to the state many medical deficiencies and disorders. Hence according to the survey of insurance companies more than 60% of people prefer to have the medical insurance of themselves as well as their family.

Information on supplement and advantage plans can be found at

There are several Medicare supplement plans which make an individual feel comfortable. These plans help in paying the hospital bills for facilities and the supplement too. There are certain guidelines in these plans which are often helpful in for the people taking insurance. These plans are also the part of Medigap insurance with some useful variations. The people feel helpful due to this variation because many helpful facilities are present in the additives.

The Medicare supplement plans have the similar listings of medical institutions for the payment criteria but in a different manner. The overseas travel is included in these plans due to health reasons in order for the treatment. The payment section which was not present in the original Medigap plan is present in this plans which includes:


The co-payment is among the new additive facility in the Medicare supplement plans. The copayment is the outward pocket payment for the medical need for the individual health care. It covers the payment for the visit to the doctors for any type of health care issues. This copayment structure includes the various tests like blood test urine test or X-ray. The copayments are the fixed payments from the insurance company and the healthcare service must not exclude the limits.


These amounts are somewhat similar to the copayment facility. These include the health care payment of the plan holder. But the twist in the coinsurance is its no limit strategy. The coinsurance varies their percentage scale as per the facility and treatment varies with the individual. The coinsurance ensures to pay the all the balance amount if the treatment costs more than the expectation.


These are an integral part of any type of insurance plan. The premium payment of Medicare supplement plans have the flexibility to fix is as per the convenience of the policyholder. The premium includes complete drug coverage with hospital visits and health care additives.

Medicare Advantage – A Personal Story

The following account provided excerpts from a seniors perspective of the medicare advantage. According to him, he had recently turned 65, and was being barraged with information on what type of Medicare plan to choose. After just about three months on Medicare he was happy so far with a Medicare advantage plan. He chose the advantage plan with secure horizons, that is, no additional premium after the charge for Medicare part B has been deducted from my Social Security check.

Learn more at

It is vital at this point to hear his actual account as it sort to shed light on several issues while simultaneously answering several questions. “My co-pays with this plan are as follows: $15 for a visit to my primary care physician… $30 to see a specialist (I needed a referral from my primary care physician to see a specialist) As well as $175 for an outpatient surgical procedure. In 2011, my co-pays will be $10 to see a primary care physician and $35 to see a specialist. The co-pay for an outpatient surgical procedure remains the same at $175”.

The next point he raises seemed to provide more of an idea on the procedure – “If I had a Medicare supplement plan, called Medigap plans, I would pay an extra $123 a month. For this extra premium I would eliminate the office co-pays, surgical copayments,and the co-pays or special procedures not covered in my Medicare advantage plan. For instance, he required a CAT scan, and got a surprise when he went to have the CAT scan performed as CAT scans are not covered under my Medicare advantage plan. Asides this surprise I was glad with the coverage that I receive with my Medicare advantage plan.

If you are a healthy person, it is recommend you stay on the Medicare advantage plan. If you see the Dr. a regular basis I would take a strong look at a Medigap plan, which eliminates all your co-pays and would’ve take care of my CAT scan. You have to do something extra as well to get your drugs covered with a Medigap. Prescriptions under Medicare advantage have usually been under $10.

Firms tend to offer an early enrollment discount for those who enroll in their plan within a certain time period after turning 65. This discount usually is reduced over time; however, when enrolling at or near age 65, the discount can make one company’s rates better than another.

Understanding Medicare


Ever heard of the statement – a Medicare Supplement is the “Cadillac” of Medicare health plans because of its outstanding health coverage (bases on Medicare Supplement Plan F ), predictable costs, and the freedom to choose almost any doctor, specialist, and hospital that you need or want. For many seniors is it vital to understand this article as it basically gives a good idea of knowing if you have made the right choice or not. With only Medicare, you are subjected to paying approximately 20% of all medical costs. With a Medigap plan, however, you can greatly reduce or, with some plans, completely eliminate your out of pocket costs.

Find the best plans at

If you are on Medicare, are 65 years of age or older, and are on a fixed income, then a Medicare Supplement Plan is definitely something you should consider looking into. These additional benefits have proven to be extremely beneficial time and time again, so why not take advantage of the offer? Work with a Medicare supplement brokerage to help evaluate and, if it makes sense, apply for a new Medicare Supplement Plan today to get the cheapest most affordable rate with the best rated company available to you based on your heath. You always have the option to change your plan later on. Assess and think about the other options even after you’ve chosen and signed up for a specific plan.

Most noticeably is the flexibility of a plan to adapt to life’s ups and downs and, take on extra expense. To be able to uncover the most effective Medicare Supplement Plans, consequently, you’ll want to take benefit of an agent as they will be in the most beneficial feasible position to locate the most effective feasible policies that will be suitable for you. Typically this is a much far better selection than going straight to a huge firm and via an independent broker you may be able to find the very best alternatives obtainable.

Once a Medigap plan has been decided upon, it’ll be pretty effortless to sign up; it is the process to acquiring there which take the time. But it’s time well spent, as the plan will most likely be needed by means of the years, and there are some awful stories from individuals who have not had adequate cover. Once signed, coverage will commence straight away, and you’ll be able to move on doing what you take pleasure in, understanding you’ve got the valuable safety net at your back



Medicare Supplemental Plans – Options (Part 2)

When thinking about medical supplement plans, it is vital to understand the accessible options to interested individuals. There is naturally a lot of talk that Medicare advantage will be on the chopping block as the national health plan goes into effect. If you believe that healthcare costs are going to go down with a national health care plan, you are delusional. The insurance companies are not stupid, and paying for more people and allowing for pre-existing conditions is going to cost someone and that someone is going to be you… Just be prepared… and you won’t be surprised.

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Now, the bottom line, all the plans my friend are the same. Did you hear that, all the plans are the same? It is like a flat screen TV that is being sold by multiple stores. It is the same product but it may be less expensive with one store verses another. So, you should shop price, price, and more price. That is the way you win this game. Do not be fooled by the agent when they tell you their product or value is better. That is not possible. Their price may is lower, and that is something you can hang your hat on.

Are the plans easy to comprehend? No, you will have to do a lot of research by yourself. Also if you are interested in a Medigap plan, you will eventually end up speaking to a salesperson, you can bypass the salesperson if you choose a Medicare advantage plan.

Something to keep in mind, if you choose a Medicare advantage plan, is to let the doctor know the name of your plan on making your appointment… The advantage plan is an insurance contract with a third-party, that is assigned the premium, deducted from your Social Security check. The insurance company stands in place of Medicare coverage. This is somewhat confusing, but helpful nurses will show you the way to cut through the clutter.

Therefore, calm down, and be cool by this entire information overload that you will get. Compare prices and go with the best priced plan. Do not think that a national carrier is more reliable and pays more that is non-sense. Each carrier has to be certified each state that they want to do business in. They would not be doing business if they were not up to standards of the Insurance Commission as expected from us.