Medicare is a federal health insurance program that provides benefits to those 65 and older and to some younger individuals with disabilities.
To understand what Medicare is and how Medicare works, it helps to explore the different types of Medicare and the coverage they provide.
- Medicare Part A covers hospital expenses (Original Medicare)
- Medicare Part B is your general medical insurance for outpatient medical needs (Original Medicare)
- Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage) includes coverage for everything in Medicare Parts A and B plus additional coverage
- Medicare Part D solely covers prescription drugs
Any inpatient care falls under Medicare Part A coverage. That includes:
- Hospital stays (semi-private rooms) up to 60 days
- Nursing services
- Intensive care services
- Drugs, medical supplies, and equipment used on the premises
- Lab tests and X-rays taken while hospitalized
- Surgery and recovery costs
- Rehabilitation and therapy services
- Part-time home nursing care
Medicare Part B covers outpatient needs, including:
- Doctor visits
- Tests, screenings, and X-rays
- Flu shots and other vaccinations
- Necessary medical supplies
- Outpatient mental healthcare
- Medically necessary preventive care
More Medicare coverage can mean more peace of mind. That’s why many people choose Part C, called a Medicare Advantage plan, which you can select from private insurers like Anthem. Medicare Part C plans include Part A and Part B (Original Medicare).
Many Medicare Advantage plans include prescription drug coverage (Part D) along with other benefits Original Medicare does not cover.
Medicare Advantage plans may include:
- Routine dental care including cleanings, X-rays, and dentures
- Routine vision care including eye exams, glasses, and contacts
- Routine hearing care including hearing aids
- Fitness benefits including exercise classes
Unique Government health care doesn’t cover physician recommended prescriptions. For that, you can either pick a Government health care Benefit plan that joins with Part D to incorporate physician recommended drug inclusion, or an independent Part D arrangement that simply covers professionally prescribed drugs.
Your yearly pay figures out what you pay for Unique Federal medical care (Parts An and B). Government medical care Benefit plans (Part C) and Federal medical insurance Part D plans can fluctuate in cost in view of the inclusion of the arrangement you select.
Assessing Federal medical care costs is the initial step to making Government medical care work inside your own spending plan. That implies knowing the pieces of Government health care — what they cover and what you pay.
You have a seven-month window to apply for Medicare:
- Three months before the month you turn 65
- The month you turn 65
- Three months after the month you turn 65
It’s great to know your Federal medical care enlistment dates. These are times when you can add, switch, or drop inclusion so you have an arrangement that meets your requirements.
Your Underlying Enlistment Period is that seven-month window portrayed previously. It is your most memorable opportunity to apply for Unique Federal medical care. Attempt to join during this chance to keep away from punishments and postponed inclusion.
Assuming you previously applied for Unique Federal health insurance however find you really want to make transforms, you can do that during the Yearly Enlistment Time frame.
The Yearly Enlistment Time frame (otherwise called the Yearly Political race Period) is from October 15 to December 7 every year, and it is your chance to add, drop, or change your advantages.
Yearly Enlistment is likewise a great chance to pursue a Federal health insurance Benefit plan in the event that you really want more inclusion. In the event that you have an arrangement as of now, you can make changes to it or to a Section D arrangement. The Federal health care Benefit Open Enlistment Period (January 1 to Walk 31) is one more opportunity to change your Government medical care Benefit plan, however you can change or drop your arrangement once during this period. In the event that you drop your Federal medical insurance Benefit plan, you will get back to Unique Government medical care (Section An and Part B). On the off chance that you return to Unique Government health care, you will be offered the chance to sign up for a Section D arrangement.
Visit your local Social Security office to sign up for Medicare, or sign up with Social Security online in about 10 minutes. You may need the following documents:
- Your Social Security card
- Your original birth certificate
- Proof of U.S. citizenship or legal citizenship status documentation if you were not born in the U.S.
- A copy of your W-2 form
Choose the best Medicare plan for you by reviewing your coverage needs and budget. Compare plans to find the right fit.