Frequently Asked Questions from Medicare Participants

Assuming you just started using Medicare, you may be confused about the available options. Here are some questions that many older adults have when approaching retirement.

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If you or your spouse has paid Medicare taxes during your working hours and you receive social security contributions, you will receive a Medicare card by mail three months prior to your 65th birthday and you will be automatically registered in Part A (hospital insurance) on your birthday account. If you do not receive social security benefits because you are still working, you will need to go directly to Social Security to register for Medicare during the first registration period (three months prior to your birthday and three months thereafter). If you have not paid any Medicare taxes while working, you will need to contact Social Security directly to buy Part A.

If you are an automatic Part A participant, you will automatically be enrolled in Medicare Part B – Medicare’s medical insurance component – on the first day of the month you reach the age of 65. Part B costs a standard amount for almost everyone. If you are not an automatically enrolled participant and you do not sign up for Part B, if you are applying for Part A because you or your spouse are still working, you can do so during the general registration period (January 1 through March 31), coverage starts every year on the 1st of July or in the special registration period. The special registration period allows you to enroll for Part B, within the eight-month period after that employer-based or employment coverage terminates or at any time while you have employer-based group coverage (whichever comes first). If you sign up as part of the General Registration Period, you may receive a late enrollment deadline if you did not enroll when you were first eligible.

Medicare supplement plans are standardized and therefore have the same benefits, regardless of which carrier you refer them to. During your open registration period (the first six months you are both 65 years old and enrolled in Medicare Part B), an insurance company can not refuse you Medigap policies that it sells and let you wait for the insurance to commence or You will be charged more due to a precondition. These plans vary, but include benefits such as the first three quarts of blood when you are hospitalized, part B overrun and skilled nursing facility care co-insurances.

Medicare Advantage are private insurance plans that contract with the government for Medicare (including medical and hospital supplies). Often they include Part D (prescription drug) coverage in addition to traditional benefits and usually require an out-of-pocket premium. Some of these plans – like PPOs and HMOs – limit the services you can use to their provider networks. However, they can often lower your healthcare costs. You can enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan when you first come to Medicare or between November 15-31st December or 1st of January-31st March each year.

A Brief Overview of Medicare Parts A and B

A Brief Overview of Medicare Parts A and B

Medicare was created in 1965 when US President Lyndon Johnson put Title XVIII, an amendment to the Social Security Act, into force to provide people aged 65 or over with health insurance. In addition, younger people with disabilities or those with end-stage renal disease were also screened. Originally the program was Medicare Part A and B with “A” as hospital coverage and “B” as cover for medical expenses (ie medical visits) and needed medical equipment.

Medicare Part A – Hospital Insurance

Covers hospital stays, including inpatient accommodation. It involves being in a semi-private room, your food and all the tests that need to be administered. It also includes staying in a qualified care facility to recover from injury or surgery, provided that the person has met certain criteria (the breakdown of these criteria is available on the Medicare website). Part A also has a deductible of $ 1,184 (as of 2013) and it is important to keep in mind that this is a deductible “per period of service” and not an annual deductible.


Part A covers a maximum of 100 days in a care facility, while the maximum stay is 90 days for inpatient stays. In addition, people who need hospice care and have a fatal illness whose life lasts 6 months or less are also covered under Medicare A. The treatment covered includes medication, pain relief and symptom control.

Medicare Part A covers your hospital costs. These include hospitalization, skilled care (if care is not the only care you need), hospice and home care. For Part A benefits, you may be required to pay various deductibles, co-insurances and co-payments.

Medicare Part B – Health Insurance

Some medical products and services not covered by Part A are normally covered in Part B for outpatient purposes. Part B is a deferred option if the beneficiary or his spouse is still employed and receives health insurance provided by the employer. Part B coverage will take effect as soon as the person has paid their $ 147 deductible (as of 2013). From then on, Medicare covers 80% of the approved spend while the person is responsible for the remaining 20%. Many people are looking for a Medicare Supplement Plan to cover what Part A & B does not cover.

Medicare Part B give you insurance for your health. It includes 2 types of services, which include services necessary for the treatment of diseases or situations like doctor visits, laboratory work, X-rays and outpatient surgery, as well as preventative services to keep you healthy, such as cancer screening and flu vaccines.

How to distinguish Medicare parts A and B.

Apart from the general breakdown of Medicare Part A and B mentioned above, there are other differences between the two. In addition to hospital stays and the above-mentioned areas, Part A also includes blood transfusions and home health services. Part B covers other aspects that are not covered in Part A. Occupational and physical therapy as well as outpatient care are usually covered under Medicare Part B.

Medicare Parts A and B have certain benefits that may apply to your circumstances, depending on the health insurance you need. For more information about Medicare Part A and B, visit the official Medicare website.

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Memory Problems as A Senior

We all know that the older we get the harder it is to remember things like you used to. Memory loss is linked to old age and is very normal, you can even start having problems with memory when you are middle aged and forward. It can be hard to deal with this and it can actually be very frustrating to deal with and it can feel like you are out of control in everything. Many people deal with this when they start to get older and it can happen on different times it just depends on the person. Quotes for 2019 blue cross blue shield advantage plans are reasonable.

A big cause of memory loss when you start to get older is because of Alzheimer’s disease. This disease is because of a lot of brain cells being lost. This condition is very common in people who are older in age and it currently does not have any cures or anything that we know of to help treat this, which can be very scary for people who end up getting this condition. Over time it will start to become worse and you may end up not being able to remember most common things or not being able to do things on your own like you used to be able to do. This is why it is good to have family and friends around you to help support and comfort you in this time in your life. You may start to feel guilty because you are unable to remember who they are and not be able to remember very important things about your life.

Although there is no cure for this condition, there are different things you can do to help you feel better on a daily basis. Have someone around you always that knows how to help you if you live on your own, if you live in a retirement home then most likely you will always be around staff that can help you with the things that you need to do on the daily. It can be very hard to deal with someone helping you everyday with things that you used to be able to do on your own. But it is a need for you to have someone around that is able to help you.

Preventative services now covered by Original Medicare and Medigap plans

Medicare plan has been introduced for quite a long time in the U.S. to provide respite to seniors and the disabled to get good quality medical care. But the truth is that it does not offer 100% coverage and the policy holders are required to pay co-insurance, co-pays and deductibles. Medicare plans do pay a lot to accommodate different types of healthcare services, however, still fails to meet other requirements. It is here that Medigap or Medicare Supplement plans have been introduced to fill up this gap left by original Medicare.

The supplemental or Medigap plan is provided to the eligible citizens by the private insurance firms. Medigap policies do come with specific benefits. The insurance firms are allowed to sell only modernized Medigap policies and not deviate from it at any point of time.

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Medigap coverage, according to the industry experts needs to be taken along with Original Medicare policy. It is important for the person to have both Medicare Part A & B. In case, the person and his/her spouse is interested to get Medicare Supplement plans, then they are to purchase their policies separately. This is because, only one person is covered by Medigap policies.

Available Medicare Supplement plans

State and Federal laws are said to regulate Medigap policies. The laws have been designed, so as to safeguard the policy holder as a beneficiary. These policies also have been labeled clearly as ‘Medicare Supplement plans’. There are 11 different modern plans to select from in majority of the sates, ranging from Plan A to N.

Different types of benefits are offered by Medicare plans and the features are very much the same for each and every insurance firm. But the private insurance firms set their prices for the plans and decide the policies to promote more in the market.

If the person has Part B Medicare for over 12 months, then he/she is eligible to get annual ‘wellness’ visit to update or develop personalized plan. This is to prevent diseases based upon current risk and health factors. However, this particular visit comes with single coverage for every 12 months.

Again, if the person receives preventative visit ‘Welcome to Medicare’, then he/she will have to wait for 12 months prior to availing the initial annual ‘wellness’ visit. Prior to annual ‘wellness’ visit, there is not required ‘Welcome to Medicare’. For this annual ‘wellness’ visit, nothing needs to be paid, if the healthcare provider or doctor accepts the assignment.

Photo Journaling in 2020

One of the biggest benefits of technology today is being able to document all of the things you love to do and share them with your friends and family, or even with the whole world. Photo journaling is the perfect way to have fun with your life during retirement, and being able to document the activities you love to do.

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Traveling around the city, country, or even the world is immensely rewarding for anyone interested in it. To add even more benefit to the intrinsic value of traveling, start a blog or photo journal of all of your journies. Stay local if you want and take pictures of your everyday life, or go a little further outside your comfort zone to explore new places you’ve never been before. If you leave the country, research which Medicare supplement plans might cover you while you’re abroad.

 

The benefit of having worldwide reach with your online photo journal is that there are billions of people in the world and each have many different interests. Regardless of what you are passionate about documenting when you travel, chances are there is a wide following of people around the world that are also interested in the very same subjects. The chances of building a following online with the very things that you already love to see and do are definitely in your favor.

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Vast countryside landscapes are certainly a popular option, along with city skylines or life in the city in general. You may enjoy experiencing different cultures away from what you’re familiar with at home and can document the unique cuisines, lifestyles, homes, clothes, and technologies of the different places you visit.

 

Write about all of your experiences and tell the world why you chose to do that particular activity or go to that particular place, and share how each one made you feel. It’s extremely valuable, intrinsically, to be able to explore and learn new things as you travel, and be able to talk about them and have conversations with people. You might grow into a new hobby you never knew you’d be interested in or find a new subject you like to document a bit more than others. Find a niche that you really appreciate and really have fun diving into it. People enjoy seeing other peoples’ perspectives and are drawn to beautiful, stimulating photos. You may even want to make some extra money selling your beautiful images!

How do Medicare and Medigap pay medical bills?

Medicare and Medicare supplement plans go hand in hand. If a person has just Medicare policy that only a part of the bills will be paid and will leave a huge chunk of bills including deductibles and copayments to be paid by the person. This might seem to be a small amount but actually accumulates to be a heavy amount. Medigap policies cover these extra costs and prove to be a smart move as all the medical expenses are covered. The best part is that the payment of medical bills is done automatically thus making it extremely easy to use.

 

Approval and billing:

In certain cases, the tests and scans might need prior approval from the Medicare that it will cover the bill. So before any tests like MRI or CAT scan or any other expensive test is scheduled, the hospital first gets a confirmation from Medicare. The communication is swift and easy and done electronically. After the tests or procedures are done, the bill is sent to Medicare electronically and it pays for the amount responsible directly to the hospitals.

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Now Medicare pays only for the portion that Medicare policies cover. The rest of the bill is then paid by Medigap if the person has one. Medicare uses a system called “crossover” under which the Medigap Insurance Company gets electronically notified. The only thing a person needs to do is show the Medicare supplement plan identification card along with the Medicare card to the present medical providers and the rest is taken care of.

It might happen that insurance companies do not approve the medical treatments because the only job for insurance companies is to pay the bills for bills that have been approved by Medicare. SO it is important to check whether the services and treatments needed are covered by Medicare or Medigap supplement plans.

Billing issues:

There are hardly any billing issues but if in certain cases if the bill is not paid as a  result of a bill getting lost in the system, it is an easy process to file it with Medicare. To make sure that all the bills are paid, a cross-check can be done with the Explanation of benefits mailed by Medicare that contains a summary of the approved and paid bills. An account can also be created on an online Medicare website where the bills can be viewed as per needs.

Earning Extra Money Online During Retirement

If you find yourself having some extra time in your retirement, why not fill it up with fun activities that could earn you some extra money at the same time?

Start a blog

Everyone has at least one thing they’re passionate about or are an expert in. Sharing that passion with the world has never been easier than it is today with a simple internet connection. Most blogs are free to create or you can spend pretty minimal money springing for a nicer or more customizable one for yourself.

 

Spend a few hours making it look presentable to the public and start writing short posts about your special topic. Start promoting it to your network and accumulate a following of people who enjoy your content. Before you know it, you could be getting offers for advertisements to put on your site, or build an email list big enough and companies may ask you to promote their products to your following for them.

Make arts & crafts

If you’re good with your hands and enjoy spending your time making things, you don’t even need a following online to sell your products. There are plenty of websites these days that let you create an account and sell to users on their platform, like Amazon, Ebay, or Shopify. If you get a big enough demand, you may even consider selling on your own personal website instead, and keep even more profit for yourself.

Take surveys

Many companies offer money to consumers to try to understand what they want and how they can give it to them. Offering to spend time taking surveys for companies requires little effort, no skill, and takes less time than you’d spend researching different Medicare supplement plans. All you have to do is be honest, and you might learn about some pretty cool products as well.

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Much like taking surveys for companies, some of them want you to test out their product before it hits the market and find any flaws or inconveniences with it. Same goes for websites, they may be launching a new site or section of their site and want to make sure their customers can easily navigate it to find what they’re looking for and aren’t confused by it.

 

Some of these may only pay a few dollars each time you do it, but if you have the extra time and you do it enough, the money can really add up and required very little effort.

Retirement Resources for Veterans

If you’re like most retired Vets today you may have experienced an overwhelming amount of information about retirement and healthcare options. From GI Bill and military disability benefits to choosing the right Medicare supplement plans, the amount of information out there is substantial and can be confusing. Don’t overlook these important resources designed to make navigating retirement a breeze.

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Veterans Affairs

The first place to consider for all of your military service related needs is the VA. Although it can seem large and confusing at times, it’s a central location for anything relating to disability compensation, healthcare, pension, loans, employment, etc. You can also find programs for geriatrics, long-term care, and home care.

 

Some benefits you might be eligible for and not even know about include additional life insurance plans, tax preparation, and mortgage assistance. Certain benefits aren’t always the easiest to find for yourself, so it’s best to contact them directly and ask a professional to walk you through everything you may be eligible for.

AARP

Becoming a member of AARP gives you access to a wealth of knowledge from the retirement community as a whole. You can find financial professionals to help you manage your money, travel professionals to help you find the best ways to plan your next trip, or health professionals if you’re interested in consulting a personal trainer or a nutritionist, to name a few. As a member you’ll also have access to variety of discounts on all of these products and services you love. Discounted movie tickets, restaurants, hotels, and groceries can all be found here.

 

The online community is also a great place to read about what other retirees are doing or warning you against doing. It’s a fantastic place for sharing knowledge in a central location for everyone to learn about best practices for anything you’re looking for in your retirement.

Nonprofits and Associations

Depending on your experience in service or your interests, you may find that you fit in nicely with the mission of a nonprofit and want to contribute your time of efforts. Or you may be eligible for certain membership associations like the American Legion or VFW if you satisfy their membership requirements.

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Once you’re apart of these organizations you’ll be able to take advantage of any special benefits they provide specifically to their members. In addition to their specific benefits, you may even find them to be a great resource for networking and building new friendships.

Eligibility of Medicare Supplement Plan

The supplement plan of Medicare is done by private health insurance.  Medicare supplement work under the prerequisites of Medicare Part A, and Part B. For one to enjoy the services of Medicare Supplement one has to be enrolled in a Medicare.  Medicare part A and B are only for the US citizens or alternatively for the permanent legal inhabitants.  The persons enclosed on this act must be 65 years old and above. They must be diagnosed with end stage renal disease, enduring kidney malfunction necessitating dialysis or even transplant.  One must be prior getting disability benefits from the social security administration or the Railroad Retirement Board. One is eligible or viable after getting disability benefits for 24 months in a rank.

One is eligible for Medicare supplement if diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease.  Most cases one becomes eligible for the Medicare Supplement because of the age.  Find out how at https://www.bestmedicaresupplementplans2019.com/The law of federal does not permit one to receive Medicare Supplement plan under the age of 65.  In some United States of America some parts do allow one to get the services or to be enrolled under the age of 65.  One can apply for Medicare Supplement after going through Part A and part B.  Once when one get enrolled in Medicare Supplement one must start to pay the agreed premium in order to be cared for by the company.  The Medicare does not cater for any premium fee of the client.

The open staffing transom is a six months period, starting on the day Medicare B becomes useful. The eligibility of Medicare must be sustained fully by an individual. Once when one get enrolled due to old age it is obligatory to abide within the set terms and conditions of the Medicare supplement. Failure to comply with the set policies of Medicare Supplement one can be terminated. It is advisable the old men and women to be loyal and patriotic so as to continue enjoying the set rules of the Medicare Supplement. The authentic eligibility must be in the Original Medicare, and the Americans should avoid be duped or played games by scammers and cons.

In case one wants to cease to be a member of Medicare it must be done in an official manner. The patient should go to the Human Resource department so that to give detailed information for quitting the Medicare Supplement. It is not fair not to rise up one day and decide to quit from the Medicare Supplement. If a person who was receiving the services of Medicare dies his or her information should be forwarded to the office. The employees of Medicare are highly trained with professionalism, integrity, and prudence in dealing with the clients.  The enrollment of Medicare is done in an upright manner where no cases of corruption or illegality have ever been heard. The enrolment is focused to assist the old people to be less vulnerable and live long. It is quite important the old individuals who have attained the age of 65 to start enjoying services of Medicare.

 

Challenges Facing Medicare Supplements Plan

Irrespective of Medicare providing a number of benefits to the clients it faces a number of challenges.  The gradual ongoing raising costs services are a concern need to be sorted. In order for people to get worthy treatment services from Medicare Supplement some conditions must be met. Professional employees ought to be hired, and reliable equipment must be available. The Medicare Supplements Plan faces shortage of finances with the low incomes and critical health problems.  There is a lot of complexity experienced by the administration system due to Medicare covering a set of portion of medical expenses.

Smart strategies need to be put in place to ensure smooth running of the leadership system.   The increasing number of patients need to be served with good services, reducing physical and cognitive limitations.  The chronic conditions of the old age need to be sorted out with a lot of intelligence and professionalism. The viability and the significance of Medicare need to be maintained at all costs so as to fetch a lot of patients as much as possible.  Medicare Supplement insurance plans are not permitted to cover part D, which is the prescription drug plan. Part D is a different purchase and has a distinct terms and conditions attached to it.

 

A person enrolled for Medicare Supplement plan is demanded to keep track of three different cards. These include; insurance plans card, Medicare supplement, and medical card. This can be really confusing to an old  man or woman.  Medicare premiums are not always constant they hike once in a while.  Medicare meets some challenges among the staff. It is quite unusual  when   solidarity among the employees is not manifested and doesn’t meet the common good of the  company when the staff are  working in a disintegrated manner. The bridging of the gap between the clients and the employees has not been effectively met. A synergy need to be put in place so  the manager, staff, and the clients be in a harmony with one another. The specialists who usually offer services to the old individuals work out on hypothetical deduction method which might not be so exact. This may lead to dysfunction to the patients or even death of the patients.

There some restrictions of persons fewer than 65 age who cannot enjoy the services of Medicare. Some people living in United States may not have attained the age but may be in the dire need of medical care. In terms of drug prescription Medicare does not offer any subsidiary to the patients. The clients have to pay for the full payment cost.

The Medicare may deny a person to decline from its services after being enrolled. This is a disadvantage because it limits the autonomous aspect of the patient by lessening the freewill.  Medicare does not offer the 100% information needed to counsel the patients. It majors its services by giving treatment services to the sick patients. It faces the limitations of counselors and psychologists who can really assist the old people to get liberated out from depression or stressful conditions.