Turning 65? Now What?

As you approach turning 65 you will start receiving mailers/solicitation in your mailbox almost daily with information about Medicare and the various options you can choose. This process can be very overwhelming, and you might feel like you do not know where to begin. At Hartman Insurance Services we pride ourselves as educators and love to empower others to make informed decisions. If you want to know our step-by-step instructions, and what to do before, during, and after you turn 65 then continue reading.

Turning 65 is a major milestone in one’s life! Congratulations! Our goal is to reach out to people turning 65 four months before their birth month. We want to answer any questions you might have about Medicare before you apply. Some questions that need to be answered first are: Will you retire or continue working when you turn 65? Do you need to apply for both Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance) & Part B (Medical Insurance)? If you are covered by employer coverage, do you have to sign up for Medicare?

Once you enroll, you’ll need to decide how you’ll get your Medicare coverage. There are 2 main ways:

Original Medicare – includes Part A and Part B. You pay for services as you get them. When you get services, you’ll pay a deductible for each benefit period for Part A and at the start of each year for Part B, and you usually pay 20% of the cost of the Medicare-approved service, called coinsurance. If you want drug coverage, you can add a separate drug plan (Part D). Original Medicare pays for much, but not all, of the cost for covered health care services and supplies. Also, there is NO maximum out of pocket cap with Original Medicare. A Medicare Supplement insurance (Medigap) policy can help pay some of the remaining health care costs, like copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles. Some Medigap policies also cover services that Original Medicare doesn’t cover, like medical care when you travel outside the U.S.

Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance). Part A covers inpatient hospital stays, care in a skilled nursing facility, hospice care, and some home health care. If you’re over 65 (or turning 65 in the next 3 months) and not already getting benefits from Social Security, you need to sign up to get Medicare Part A. You won’t get Medicare automatically unless you are already receiving social security benefits.

Medicare Part B is Medical Insurance. Part B covers certain doctors’ services, outpatient care, medical supplies, and preventive services. In some cases, if you don’t sign up for Part A (if you have to buy it) and Part B when you’re first eligible, your enrollment may be delayed and you may have to pay a late enrollment penalty.

Medicare Part D (prescription drug coverage) helps cover the cost of prescription drugs (including many recommended shots or vaccines).

Medicare Advantage (also known as Part C) is an “all in one” alternative to Original Medicare. These “bundled” plans include Part A, Part B, and usually Part D.  These types of plans (MAPD) are a different means of accessing your Medicare benefits.

At Hartman Insurance Services we are always available to answer your questions about Medicare. Bill and Brietta would love to help you learn more about what your options are when you turn 65. Call our office to schedule an appointment 260-483-2305.