Thank you, Lance,
You certainly make it easy for me. I would be lost without you.
This is a most useful government website. In the middle of their home page they list their “Top 7 Services”. (click on link below to view)
- Find Out What Medicare Costs
- Find Health and Drug Plans
- Apply Online for Medicare Now
- Find Out if Medicare Covers Your Test, Item or Service
- Get Extra Help with Prescription Drug Costs
- Find Out How Medicare Works with Your Other Insurance
1. You can search for the names of the Medicare supplement companies in your state. There is no premium information.
2. You can do a prescription drug plan search by entering your prescriptions: Caution: There are a few traps that can catch the unsuspecting person. Some Part D prescription plans use preferred and non-preferred pharmacies. The annual estimate of one’s total cost is based on using the preferred pharmacies with the lowest copays. If one uses a non-preferred pharmacy, the copays will be higher and the annual estimate will be higher than what appears on the website. Check with the plan or call 1-800-MEDICARE for details.
3. You can locate the Medicare advantage plans that are available in your county of residence. There is a common misunderstanding here. Some people infer this to mean that the plan can only be used in the county of your residence. This is usually not the case at all. Many network plans can be used in several counties. However, it is possible that a given HMO plan may only be available in just one county. Check with the plan or call 1-800-MEDICARE for details. The key thing to remember is this: You can only sign up for a plan if it is offered to residents of your county.
4. If you’re turning 65, you can sign up for Medicare online. When you initiate this process on Medicare.gov, you will automatically be redirected to SSA.gov. It takes about fifteen minutes to sign up for Medicare Part B.
Publications: (Click on a link below to view the official publication)
Medicare and You
This booklet contains everything you want to know about Medicare. It has so much information that it literally snows some people over and drowns them in information overload. Caution: The version that the Medicare usually mails out to Medicare recipients lists the Part D Prescription Plans and Medicare health (advantage) plans that are available in the county of your residence. It does NOT list Medicare supplement companies. The only exception is if a Medicare advantage company also offers Medicare supplement plans. Those names are there because they offer Medicare advantage plans only.
Choosing a Medigap (Medicare Supplement) Policy
This well-written publication provides timely information about Medicare supplement policies. Tip: In the chapter titled “Steps to Buying a Medigap policy” you can save yourself a whole lot of grief. Instead of going through the tedious and time-draining steps that the booklet suggests, just find yourself a competent insurance professional to help you.
Your Medicare Benefits
Taken from the introduction:
This booklet explains which health care services and supplies Medicare covers, and how to get those benefits through Original Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance). It includes the following rules:
• What specific benefits you can get and when
• How much Medicare pays for each service and how much you pay
• How to get help with any questions you may have
The 2010 Affordable Care Act makes many improvements to Medicare, including added benefits and more coverage. Many of these changes are noted in this booklet, such as additional preventive services and lower coinsurance payments for some treatments.
This educational tool provides information on Medicare preventive services. Information provided includes Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System/Current Procedural Terminology Codes, International Classification of Diseases, Coverage Requirements, Beneficiary Liability for each Medicare preventive sevice, and more.