Medicare, Explained

Medicare, Explained

By Marnina Delahanty

 

It’s Open Enrollement and there’s no better time to educate ourselves about the complexities of Medicare. Understanding Medicare is more crucial than ever, as expected retirement-long Medicare-covered healthcare costs have reached $285,000!  That’s for healthy male/female couples retiring at age 65 in 2019, according to Fidelity Investments’ annual Retirement Health Care Cost Estimate.  In just one year, it has increased $5,000. 

 

This does not  include out-of-pocket expenses such as dental, basic vision, over-the-counter medicines, and long-term care.  Working with a Medicare specialist, many will find that added coverage provides the protection they need. Breaking down Medicare’s components is a crucial starting point to determine individual needs.  AARP’s Medicare Guide clarifies it in time for Open Enrollment, which runs 10/15/19 – 12/07/19. 

Medicare Part A

While everyone eligible for Medicare receives time-limited inpatient hospital coverage at no expense through Medicare Part A, seniors can easily exceed its time and facility limitations.  

Medicare Part B 

At an added cost, Part B covers medically necessary preventive services, ambulance services, durable medical equipment, and outpatient coverage. In addition to its monthly premium, seniors are required to pay 20% for doctor visits and other outpatient services. 

 

Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage Plan)

Adding a carefully chosen Advantage Plan can offset the gaps left by Parts A and B.  The federal government requires these privately insured plans to cover everything that Parts A and B cover, and some plans pay for services that original Medicare does not, including dental and vision care, and, often, prescription drugs.   Choosing a plan with broad in-network provider options is crucial to keeping costs down by avoiding out-of-network providers.

Medicare Part D

Prescription drug coverage, alone, is addressed by Part D.  Depending on regional availability, some Part C plans may include prescription coverage in their bundles.  

With stakes so high, it’s essential that plan selections meet individuals’ needs. That’s undeniable asseniors’ anticipated  healthcare costs rise to $285,000.  Clearly, partnering with a Medicare specialist is more crucial now than ever before. Contact Asurea for a reliable agent to navigate your way to the best Medicare fit for you.