As soon as you turned 64 (if not earlier) it probably seemed like every company in the world wanted to sell you a Medicare plan. And you may have found yourself confused. You aren’t alone.
If you’re turning 65 soon and live in Washington, this guide is for you.
Original Medicare refers to Medicare Part and Part B. It’s provided by the federal government and most people choose to have both.
Medicare Part A covers hospital insurance such as inpatient hospital stays, stays at nursing facilities, hospice care, and certain home healthcare.
Medicare Part B covers medical insurance such as preventive care, doctor visits, and outpatient care.
Generally, you are automatically enrolled if you’re getting Social Security Benefits. If you aren’t, you have to sign up.
If you haven’t received Social Security benefits for 4 or more months prior to turning 65, you will have to sign up through Social Security.
Whether you’re turning 65 or you’re already there, we have a Premera Medicare plan for you. Get help and sign up to chat with your local expert today.Sign up to chat
Original Medicare costs
Medicare Part A typically doesn’t have a monthly premium if you (or your spouse) paid Medicare taxes for 40 or more quarters. If you paid Medicare taxes for less than 40 quarters, here’s what you can expect to pay.
Medicare Part B does include a monthly premium. Its cost depends upon your yearly income. The lowest you’d pay is $135.50 each month. Here’s a full list of premiums based on income.
Your Part B deductible is $185 for the year in 2019. This is the amount you pay before your coverage begins.
Medicare Part D (drug coverage)
You need to enroll in Medicare Part D for drug coverage in addition to Original Medicare. Some Medicare plans, such as Medicare Advantage, cover prescription drugs.
You’ll pay an additional monthly premium for Part D. The lowest you could pay is $12.40 each month. Here’s a full list of premiums based on income.
Medicare Advantage (Part C)
Private health insurance companies provide Medicare Advantage plans. These plans simplify Medicare by basically combining Part A, Part B, and usually Part D into one plan.
The major benefit of Medicare Advantage is that it simplifies your coverage. You’ll pay one premium monthly for these benefits.
Medicare Supplement (Medigap)
Medicare Supplement plans are also known as Medigap. These complement Original Medicare, paying for costs it does not cover (like copayments). Unlike Medicare Advantage plans, these do not replace Original Medicare. You would also need to purchase Medicare Part D for drug coverage.
These plans are ideal for those who travel a lot and would like broader coverage. You can see any doctor or provider that accepts Medicare. You can even get coverage traveling outside of the United States.
You need to have Medicare Part A and Part B in order to purchase a Supplement plan.
Choosing a plan
You can enroll in your first Medicare plan 3 months before you turn 65 and within 3 months after turning 65.
Many people choose to work with a Medicare agent to help find the right Medicare plan. Sign up to get personalized help for free today from one of our agents.