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Are you 64 years old?

The best thing that can happen to someone age 64 is they turn 65 and get Medicare. For people paying for their medical insurance there is a huge cost saving and better benefits.

The information described in this post also applies if you are retiring, if you have relocated, or if you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.

Original Medicare is medical insurance for people age 65+ and people that receive Social Security Disability for over 2 years. Medicare comes in 2 parts:

  • Medicare Part A covers Hospitalization
  • Medicare Part B covers Outpatient Services

Most people pay nothing for Part A, and $144.60/month for Part B (this assumes income is below $87K individual or $174K for a couple. You should receive your Medicare ID, 90 days prior to your 65th birthday month.

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If you do not received your Medicare ID card you can contact Medicare, 1-800-772-1213 or apply online.

Medicare offers medical coverage; however it has coverage gaps:

    1. Medicare does not cover prescription drugs.
    2. Medicare has high deductibles.
    3. Medicare does not offer an Out of Pocket Maximum
    4. Medicare does not provide annual physicals
    5. Medicare does not cover vision or dental.
    6. Medicare does not pay the cost of custodial nursing care.

Because of what Medicare doesn’t cover most people enroll into a plan designed to filled the gaps left by Original Medicare. This is done in 1 of 2 ways:

Medicare Supplement & Prescription Drug Plan - If you’ve heard about Plan F or Plan G they were talking about a Medicare Supplement. The biggest advantage of a Medicare Supplement that you have very little out of pocket cost when you see the doctor. The disadvantage is they tend to be more expensive and they do not include drug coverage so you have to add a Prescription Drug Plan (Medicare Part D).

Medicare Advantage Plans (Medicare Part C) – With a Medicare Advantage Plan you are assigning your Medicare benefits to a private insurance company. These plans are highly regulated and have to include benefits at least equal to Original Medicare. Most plans offer benefits not offered by Original Medicare. Plans include Prescription Drugs, and some include Dental, Vision, Alternative Medicine, Health Club Membership, Over the Counter Items, and More. The advantage of Medicare Advantage Plans is they are less expensive, in fact many are available for $0. The disadvantage is that you have to pay copays when you receive services.

As a broker, AFI can help you with companies like Humana, Aetna, Regence Blue Shield, Premera Blue Cross, Kaiser Permanente, and many more. These plans offer excellent benefits and service, but are very different. There can be differences regarding Prescription Medications and how much you pay for a drug. Also different plans work with different doctors. Plan also offer different extra benefits. These difference can save you $100s if not $1,000s.

With all the differences, it is wise to speak with a professional. AFI has been helping clients with their Medicare decisions for over 25 years. Let us help you to choose the plan that is best for you.