The time surrounding your 65th birthday is your opportunity to join Medicare at the lowest price. Signing up entails understanding what options are available to you when you’re able to join, and the process of joining. Medicare has something for everyone, and when the time comes, we can get you on your way to better healthcare coverage.
The options available to you
Before signing up, it is important to understand the possibilities. Part A, which you will be getting premium-free if you have worked at least 40 tax quarters, is what will cover you in your inpatient stays. This could be the hospital, a skilled nursing facility, or hospice.
Getting Part B is one of the most vital choices if you wish to get extra coverage like Medigap or Medicare Advantage. This is your outpatient coverage. This extends to preventive care visits, which consist of screenings, exams, and x-rays.
Medicare Advantage is everything bundled into one, except with a smaller network. This plan may also require you to choose a primary care doctor, who you will have to get referrals from before you can see a specialist. In other words, you won’t be able to seek a specialist on your own. This type of plan does not mesh well with other health insurance like employer group health insurance. You can join a Medicare Advantage policy, but if you’re getting employer insurance, you risk losing that group health plan coverage forever.
Part D is for prescription drugs, but you can wait to join if you already have creditable prescription drug coverage. Once that creditable drug coverage ends, it is imperative to get Medicare Part D.
When you can join
Assuming you’re close to 65, you are entering the Initial Enrollment Period. You don’t have to wait until your 65th birthday to enroll. You can enroll three months in advance. If you have just turned 65, you still have until three months after the month you turned 65.
This is the ideal time to join because it’s the only time in which you can get Part A premium-free. When Part A premiums are not free, they’re between $259 and $471 a month.
If you’re on Social Security or getting benefits from the Railroad Retirement Board, you will not have to take any action on your behalf. Your Medicare card will be mailed to you before you turn 65.
Once the time is right, you have the ability to join Medicare. Traditionally, joining Medicare required a trip to the local Social Security office, where you’d have to stand in line for a long time before you could get a consultation. It was a lengthy process, but luckily now things are faster and more convenient than ever before.
At AJ Health and Wealth, we can give you a free quote directly over the phone and discuss the best policies for you. We can align you with the perfect policy within minutes, and answer any questions you might have until you are comfortable and confident in your decision.