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What to Do When Turning 65: Information You Need to Know for Medicare Enrollment
From today on through 2030 thousands of baby boomers will turn 65 years of age every day. If you are thinking about what to do when turning 65, now is the time to learn as much as possible about Medicare. This is the age you become eligible for coverage. Acting on this sooner than later can help you avoid penalties incurred when you delay enrollment. Individuals approaching this age may have questions about Medicare that now is the time to get answers.
Health Plan Options Under Medicare
Medicare is federal government healthcare program for eligible persons 65 and older. The program is broken into 4 parts that each plays different roles in how beneficiaries receive health coverage: Part A covers hospitalization costs, Part B covers fees for doctor’s visits, Part C or Medicare Advantage allows patients to choose medical coverage plans through approved private companies, and Part D provides prescription drug medication coverage. There is also what is known as Medicare Supplement Plans or Medigap policies to help cover expenses Medicare does not cover.
90 days or 3 months before you turn 65 is when you can enroll for coverage. The enrollment period continues for a few months after your birthday. Individuals receiving benefits through Social Security will automatically be enrolled, so you don’t have to worry about it. Keep in mind, Social Security recipients will be enrolled to Medicare Part A and Part B prior to their birthday; when you turn 65 the coverage goes into effect. The sooner you begin the enrollment process it makes it easier for your coverage to become active when your birthday comes. To begin the enrollment process, contact the Social Security Administration.
What If You Are Still Employed?
Many find themselves considering retirement when thinking about what to do when turning 65, if they haven’t done it yet. If you are employed and have medical coverage with your employer, you may qualify for Medicare. This also applies if you are with a union group health coverage plan. You may qualify for Part B coverage if you want Medicare to be your primary insurer. You can also consider enrolling for Part A coverage to use with your employer or union group coverage. Part A can help reduce associated costs your other insurance may not cover.
Additional Information to Know on What to Do When Turning 65
Sign up for Part B coverage if you do not have other insurance or something that can supplement Medicare coverage. You should do this during the initial enrollment period to avoid penalties and to get coverage active when your birthday comes. If you wait to sign up for Part B you could incur a penalty and pay higher premiums until you enroll during the general enrollment period which runs from January 1 through March 31. Look into purchasing a Medicap policy to cover costs not covered
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