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MEDICARE SUPPLEMENTAL INSURANCE MADE HARD

Ok so here's my story

 

I'm 70 on Medicare Part A only because I get my Dr's and Rx's covered through my wifes Employer at zero cost

 

My wife is turning 65 in September and thinking about retiring

 

So I decide it's time we start trying to find out what our Healthcare Insurance is going to cost us once we are no longer covered under my wifes employers plan

 

I log onto AARP - follow the links to United Healthcare - look around online on their website and can't really understand the offerings or the costs

 

So I call the United Healthcare Phone Number and get some Agent on the phone who tells me - well I can't discuss with you any of the plans available to you or Quote you any costs until you sign up for Medicare Part B

 

Huh - I've got to start paying Hundreds of Dollars a month for Insurance I don't currently need and is more costly and offers less coverage and requires more hoops to jump through then what I'm already on - before I can even identify and plan a budget for my future healthcare costs?

 

SO AARP - PLEASE GIVE ME A BREAK WITH YOUR FAUX HEALTHCARE MADE EASY ADVICE FOR SENIORS AND YOUR PARTNERS AT UNITED HEALTHCARE!

 

IT'S BOGUS FALSE ADVERTISING

 

 

 

 

( " China if You're Listening - Get Trumps Tax Returns " )

" )
" - Anonymous

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@mickstuder 

 

Don't know what kind of Medicare plan you are looking for -

A Medicare Advantage Plan 

                    OR 

A Medicare Supplimental Plan ( Medigap - Gap insurance for what Medicare doesn't cover)

 

Here are the 2019 Medigap insurers and rates by age and type of plan in your state -

2019 New Hampshire’s Guide to Medicare Supplement Insurance -

 

Here is also the New Hampshire Dept of Insurance Medicare Insurance Information for Consumers -

(opps - edited to add this link) 

Most of the info is for Medigap coverage but the "Medicare and You" or Medicare.gov can give you general info on how Medicare Advantage plans work - with or without an attached Prescription Drug Plan.

 

Minimal Crash Course:

Yes, you do have to pick up Part B when you are no longer covered by your wife's employer plan.

For 2019, I believe oit is $ 136.50 per month (for most people) deducted from your SS benefit.  Part B is the "doc" coverage and some other things.  The total cost of the Medicare Part B program is born by the Medicare beneficiary (25%) all of them and (75%) by the taxpayers of this country out of the General fund. That is also kinda how the Medicare Part D works too.

 

Then you have to decide how you want to get your Medicare benefits -

  • traditional medicare - with or without a Medigap policy - remember traditional Medicare has no limits as to a total out of pocket - so without a Medigap plan, you will have to cover all the out of pocket cost.

                    OR

  • A Medicare Advantage plan ( see a local Medicare Insurance Broker for the ones that are available and which one might fit your needs the best.  Most have a Prescription drug benefit tied into them ( a formulary / plan check is a good idea to make sure this part is also good for you)
  • A Medicare prescription drug plan if not included in your choice of a Medicare Advantage plan.

If you don't sign up for Part B and a Part D plan when 1st eligible, there will be a premium penalty applied when you do sign up.

 

Medicare Advantage plans covers the same thing that traditional Medicare covers but in a different way.  They may also contain other benefits that traditional Medicare doesn't cover - You have to

re-up for these types of plans on an annual basis for the simple reason that health needs change AND what they may cover (formulary or extra benefits) can change too.

 

My (in general) rule of thumb on Medicare plans

  • If you want to Pay MORE NOW, to Pay LESS LATER - go with traditional Medicare WITH a Medigap plan
  • If you want to pay LESS NOW, to Pay MORE LATER - go with a Medicare Advantage plan.

 

 

You will get it, mickstuder - after you work through all the griping. Then you can help your wife.

 

It is a rather complicated matter especially for seniors - but it is what it is. 

Read your "Medicare and You" booklet - it gives some general info on how things work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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@GailL1   I find the NH "report" to be suspect.

 

Among other things it lists Aetna plus 3 of their subsidiaries. Carriers do a lot of stupid things but cannibalizing their block of business isn't one of them.

 

Only one of those carriers is currently writing new business.

 

Don't believe everything you see on the internet. - A. Lincoln


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@somarco wrote:

@GailL1   I find the NH "report" to be suspect.

 

Among other things it lists Aetna plus 3 of their subsidiaries. Carriers do a lot of stupid things but cannibalizing their block of business isn't one of them.

 

Only one of those carriers is currently writing new business.

 

Don't believe everything you see on the internet. - A. Lincoln


Well, if you cannot trust the Government, who can you trust ?  Woman Wink

 

There is mice type - (2) of the Aetna plans are for specific membership groups - as well as the footnote on the AARP - UHC Medigap - membership required in the AARP.

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@GailL1 wrote:

@mickstuder 

 

Don't know what kind of Medicare plan you are looking for -

A Medicare Advantage Plan 

                    OR 

A Medicare Supplimental Plan ( Medigap - Gap insurance for what Medicare doesn't cover)

 

Here are the 2019 Medigap insurers and rates by age and type of plan in your state -

2019 New Hampshire’s Guide to Medicare Supplement Insurance -

 

Here is also the New Hampshire Dept of Insurance Medicare Insurance Information for Consumers -

(opps - edited to add this link) 

Most of the info is for Medigap coverage but the "Medicare and You" or Medicare.gov can give you general info on how Medicare Advantage plans work - with or without an attached Prescription Drug Plan.

 

Minimal Crash Course:

Yes, you do have to pick up Part B when you are no longer covered by your wife's employer plan.

For 2019, I believe oit is $ 136.50 per month (for most people) deducted from your SS benefit.  Part B is the "doc" coverage and some other things.  The total cost of the Medicare Part B program is born by the Medicare beneficiary (25%) all of them and (75%) by the taxpayers of this country out of the General fund. That is also kinda how the Medicare Part D works too.

 

Then you have to decide how you want to get your Medicare benefits -

  • traditional medicare - with or without a Medigap policy - remember traditional Medicare has no limits as to a total out of pocket - so without a Medigap plan, you will have to cover all the out of pocket cost.

                    OR

  • A Medicare Advantage plan ( see a local Medicare Insurance Broker for the ones that are available and which one might fit your needs the best.  Most have a Prescription drug benefit tied into them ( a formulary / plan check is a good idea to make sure this part is also good for you)
  • A Medicare prescription drug plan if not included in your choice of a Medicare Advantage plan.

If you don't sign up for Part B and a Part D plan when 1st eligible, there will be a premium penalty applied when you do sign up.

 

Medicare Advantage plans covers the same thing that traditional Medicare covers but in a different way.  They may also contain other benefits that traditional Medicare doesn't cover - You have to

re-up for these types of plans on an annual basis for the simple reason that health needs change AND what they may cover (formulary or extra benefits) can change too.

 

My (in general) rule of thumb on Medicare plans

  • If you want to Pay MORE NOW, to Pay LESS LATER - go with traditional Medicare WITH a Medigap plan
  • If you want to pay LESS NOW, to Pay MORE LATER - go with a Medicare Advantage plan.

 

 

You will get it, mickstuder - after you work through all the griping. Then you can help your wife.

 

It is a rather complicated matter especially for seniors - but it is what it is. 

Read your "Medicare and You" booklet - it gives some general info on how things work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Thanks - I got as far as - "oit" - and decided I didn;t want to live after my wife retires.......................

 

 

( " China if You're Listening - Get Trumps Tax Returns " )

" )
" - Anonymous

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@mickstuder wrote:

@GailL1 wrote:

For 2019, I believe oit (my bad on the typo) is $ 136.50 per month (for most people) deducted from your SS benefit.  Part B is the "doc" coverage and some other things.  The total cost of the Medicare Part B program is born by the Medicare beneficiary (25%) all of them and (75%) by the taxpayers of this country out of the General fund. That is also kinda how the Medicare Part D works too.

 

 

 


Thanks - I got as far as - "oit" - and decided I didn;t want to live after my wife retires.......................

 

 


Sorry about the typo, mickstuder - Good Luck in your Adventure.

Maybe "Medicare (or Medicaid) for All" will be enacted before your wife retires - 

Image result for emotion icon devil pics

 

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@GailL1 wrote:

@mickstuder wrote:

@GailL1 wrote:

For 2019, I believe oit (my bad on the typo) is $ 136.50 per month (for most people) deducted from your SS benefit.  Part B is the "doc" coverage and some other things.  The total cost of the Medicare Part B program is born by the Medicare beneficiary (25%) all of them and (75%) by the taxpayers of this country out of the General fund. That is also kinda how the Medicare Part D works too.

 

 

 


Thanks - I got as far as - "oit" - and decided I didn;t want to live after my wife retires.......................

 

 


Sorry about the typo, mickstuder - Good Luck in your Adventure.

Maybe "Medicare (or Medicaid) for All" will be enacted before your wife retires - 

Image result for emotion icon devil pics

 


Thanks - I still have No Idea what - OIT - means - typo or not................................

 

 

( " China if You're Listening - Get Trumps Tax Returns " )

" )
" - Anonymous

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@mickstuder 

 

"oit" - a typo - leave out the "O" and it becomes "It"

 

 


@mickstuder wrote:



@GailL1 wrote

For 2019, I believe oit (my bad on the typo) is $ 136.50 per month (for most people) deducted from your SS benefit.  Part B is the "doc" coverage and some other things.  The total cost of the Medicare Part B program is born by the Medicare beneficiary (25%) all of them and (75%) by the taxpayers of this country out of the General fund. That is also kinda how the Medicare Part D works too.

 

 




Thanks - I still have No Idea what - OIT - means - typo or not................................

 

 

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 I got as far as - "oit" - and decided I didn;t want to live after my wife retires.......................

 

@mickstuder  perhaps you should ask AARP about life insurance  . .


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@somarco wrote:

 I got as far as - "oit" - and decided I didn;t want to live after my wife retires.......................

 

@mickstuder  perhaps you should ask AARP about life insurance  . .


Well, I suppose if you're someone who either worked professionally in the Insurance Business or won the Genetic Lottery in the IQ Dept.- this stuff is like reading Nursery Rhymes for you ........................

 

For the rest of us & it's a Majority according to every credible article I can find on the internet - including the amount of time & space websites like AARP devote to attempting to provide - road maps for the apparently mentally challenged folks like me

 

Most Seniors have little to no idea what all this stuff means and certainly not when they are first exposed to it & trying to decipher what it all means on your own is next to impossible & that is exactly WHY most statisitics indicate - a majority of Americans on Medicare are either not on the Right or Best Plan for their Situation & whats worse - they don't even know it!

 

Take for example the fact that - Medicare uses Alpha Characters/Letters for plans - but depending on what Program your talking about - the Letter - "D" - means several totally different things..............easy right? - simple right?

 

How about things like - well if you're on a Medigap Program with Part D Coverage currently - you can stay on it - although there may be changes in coverage & billing depending on the plans geographic location - but if you go on Medigap today it's not available.......Logical - Common Sense right?

 

How many different meanings can we come up with for the Word - Supplemental - regarding Medicare?

 

When I read Gails - "oit" - I Googled the Acronym - here is what I got & it's not in any Medicare Glossary that I could find

 

1. Oregon Institute of Technology

 

2. Office of Information Technology

 

3. Oral Immunotherapy - OIT is a medical treatment guided by a board-certified allergist with a payoff of lifetime freedom from food fear and stress.

 

Oh & If the only helpful advice you can offer is to............ Bark Less - Wag More

 

This has always worked for me...............

 

Back Away From the Computer Once in Awhile & Take The Dog For a Walk..............

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

( " China if You're Listening - Get Trumps Tax Returns " )

" )
" - Anonymous

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@mickstuder wrote:

Most Seniors have little to no idea what all this stuff means and certainly not when they are first exposed to it & trying to decipher what it all means on your own is next to impossible & that is exactly WHY most statisitics indicate - a majority of Americans on Medicare are either not on the Right or Best Plan for their Situation & whats worse - they don't even know it!

 

Take for example the fact that - Medicare uses Alpha Characters/Letters for plans - but depending on what Program your talking about - the Letter - "D" - means several totally different things..............easy right? - simple right?

 

How about things like - well if you're on a Medigap Program with Part D Coverage currently - you can stay on it - although there may be changes in coverage & billing depending on the plans geographic location - but if you go on Medigap today it's not available.......Logical - Common Sense right?

 

How many different meanings can we come up with for the Word - Supplemental - regarding Medicare?

 


There are insurance brokers that can decipher the complications for you - as well as some knowledgeable employees/volunteers in the State Health Insurance Assistance 

( the accentuation should be put on the knowledgeable).  Some people have family members or paid people that help them find the right plan and review them yearly - especially Part D ( free standing or within a MA plan) and Medicare Advantage plans.

 

Many Senior get help -  Independent and Assisted Living facilities provide help to their residents if needed by knowledgeable people.

 

In Medicare, you have to make sure of your terminology - since there are PARTS and PLANS.

 

As to the term "Supplemental" - yes, I have noticed that too in a few places - adds to the confusion.  .  But only (1) type is a true supplemental.

Medigap is a supplemental plan - a gap insurance to cover what original or traditional Medicare does not cover.  A Medigap plan only works with traditional or original Medicare; NOT a Medicare Advantage plan.  A Medigap plan is NOT full insurance - it is only GAP coverage - A Medigap plan "supplements" original or traditional Medicare.

 

A Medicare Advantage plan is just another way of getting your Medicare benefits - it covers all the same things, sometimes more but in a different way than traditional or original Medicare.  It stands alone as a full plan.   They are more like the insurance that people have dealth with during their time before Medicare - they may have networks or a list of approved providers, copays, coinsurance, etc.  They may have a built in Part D - a Medicare Prescription Drug plan.  People need to reevaluate these types of plans yearly during open enrollment ( Oct to Dec each year) - just so they know that their providers are still on the list or their medication. 

 

Read the Medicare and You booklet - read all the various topics on Medicare.gov.

 

As far as cost - just remember my rule of thumb:

  • Traditional Medicare with a Medigap plan (whichever one of the different alphabet plans) - PAY MORE NOW To PAY LESS LATER

                                                   OR

  • Medicare Advantage with or without a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan - think most do have them combined nowadays.  PAY LESS NOW TO PAY MORE LATER.

 

 

 

 

 

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You do not have to be enrolled in A and B to get a rate. Almost any agent will quote rates for you by phone and several agencies have online quote engines where you can see rates.

 

I know UHC does not allow their rates to be shown online but they certainly mail out enough material that has rates and apps. Your wife has probabaly already received numerous packages like this.

 

Our 33 year old daughter that does not live with us and hasn't for years still gets kits several times during open enrollment.


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