Health Insurance

7 Resources for Making Sense of Medicare

It’s open enrollment season for Medicare. If you’re currently enrolled in Medicare, you have until December 7 to review the various plan options. This is the time when to decide which are right for your health insurance needs and finances. These are the same decisions you would make if you’re enrolling for Medicare for the first time—which you can do starting three months before your 65th birthday and up to three months afterward (or eight months after retirement if you work past 65). If you fall into either camp, or need to help make these choices for a parent or…

On Medicare? Is Your Flu Shot Covered?

There are a lot of questions that go into planning for retirement, and some of those questions concern healthcare costs. Among the more simple, straightforward questions many people have is this one: “Does Medicare cover flu shots?” The basic answer is, “Yes.” But to understand flu shot coverage, we need to do a basic lesson in Medicare 101. A lot of supplemental types of insurance have been added to the world of Medicare, but the essential program known as “Original Medicare,” is made up of two parts: Medicare Part A: Hospital insurance that covers inpatient hospital stays, care in a…

How to Avoid Mistakes When Choosing Medicare Plans

“A problem well-stated is a problem half solved,” said renowned inventor and businessman Charles F. Kettering. With the number of options, choices and deadlines facing you when making Medicare decisions, it’s not difficult to run into a few problems. In some cases, you may not realize it until it’s too late. So, what are some mistakes when choosing a Medicare plan? Here are five of the most common: Staying the Course Without Reviewing Your Current Medicare Coverage You signed up when you were eligible. That’s good. But inertia can be a dangerous thing. One of the most common mistakes is…

Top 7 Questions to Ask When Shopping for Medicare

Cake. Balloons. Medicare?! Your 65 birthday represents a milestone in your retirement. When you turn 65 it’s your golden opportunity to select a Medicare plan to meet your needs. Medicare may seem complicated at first glance, but it doesn’t have to be. The help of a knowledgeable SelectQuote agent removes uncertainty when shopping for Medicare. He or she will simplify the process for your current and long-term healthcare needs. When purchasing your Medicare plan, it’s important to consider the plan premium and the value it provides. “Think about your healthcare long term,” advised David Perlberg, a licensed SelectQuote insurance sales…

Understanding Medicare Part D Prescription Coverage

Medicare Part D is the prescription drug coverage portion of Medicare. If you’re among the 59 million Americans on Medicare – 18 percent of the population and growing – you’re probably well aware of the Medicare prescription coverage gap, often called the “doughnut hole.”  With 2019 just weeks away, fall is the time to plan your Medicare coverage, as certain rules change for the coming year. The good news is that Congress passed a bipartisan prescription drug coverage deal in February, so you should spend less on drugs in 2019. Open enrollment began October 15 and you’ll want to compare your…

Getting on Medicare Before Age 65

The annual Medicare enrollment period is about to begin, bringing with it a lot of questions about choosing your coverage, understanding the alphabet soup of its various parts and finding out why and how to get supplemental coverage. Among the many questions people have around this time of year is, “Can I get on Medicare early?” Before we start talking about that, let’s get some perspective on Medicare by looking at some statistics from the 2018 Annual Report of the Boards of Trustees of the Federal Hospital Insurance and Federal Supplementary Medical Insurance Trust Funds. It’s the annual report of…

What Medicare Covers When Traveling

What do most people say they want to do when they retire? Travel. Depending on your needs in retirement, your Medicare health insurance program may not make the best travel companion.  In the past, we’ve addressed in detail what Medicare A, B, C and D plans cover. Medicare Part A and Part B together cover essential medical scenarios such as hospital stays, doctor visits and medical equipment. Twist an ankle hiking and you may want those crutches. Whether at home or on the road, these are worthwhile services. But if you plan to travel quite a bit in retirement, let’s examine…

How to Plan for the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period

Every year, the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) or Open Enrollment kicks off Oct. 15 and closes Dec. 7. Whether you are newly eligible for Medicare or already in a plan, you’ll want to consider several items in preparation for the enrollment period. We outline steps to help ensure you get the most out of your planning. Already Enrolled in Medicare? The Medicare Annual Enrollment Period is an important time for you. Before the AEP starts, it’s always good to review your current needs and anticipate what you might need in the coming year. Perhaps you now need prescription drug coverage.…

Choosing the Right Medicare Coverage

,As you approach age 65, Medicare is on your radar. Medical expenses are one of the biggest costs you’ll face. Making a smart decision about Medicare coverage can do a lot for your health and your wealth. To get started, you will want to make sure you are choosing the right coverage option and considering any extra coverage you may need. But how do you enroll in the plan that keeps you covered at a price point that fits your budget? These steps will show you how to do exactly that. Choosing Between Original Medicare or Medicare Advantage The alphabet…

Understanding Healthcare Costs in Retirement

What to expect to spend on health care in retirement is the big question for future retirees. The reality is there is no simple answer. By understanding estimates of Medicare premiums and other related expenses, as well as some of the ways costs can be reduced, you can start to put some of the pieces of the health care puzzle together. Unpacking Average Healthcare Cost Estimates Several different estimates related to what people can expect to spend on healthcare costs in retirement are out there. One of the most commonly quoted figures is $280,000 from a Fidelity study. Equally staggering…

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