I play many roles in my life; one of them is being a caregiver for my 84-year-old grandmother. By all accounts, it is a relatively easy gig. She is able-bodied–working full-time in retail–and her mind is still sharp. She’s not up to date on current events; then again, I don’t think she ever was, not so far back as I can remember.
|Me and Charlotte the Great-2010|
A topic that we discuss a lot is Medicare supplemental insurance. As arthritis eats away at her knees at her body begins to surrender into the toll of a life well lived she is aware that this decision impacts her. For those who may not know what medicare supplemental insurance is, it is a plan that provides coverage for health insurance costs that traditional Medical does not cover. Many years ago, Medicare changed the way of coverage and payment, and so a Medicare supplemental health insurance plan was generated.
While my grandmother does not need prescription drugs at the moment, as we review medical policies, we keep in mind that this may not always be the case. Prescriptions are one of the things that the new Medicare insurance does not cover as generously as before.
While the best time to purchase a Medicare supplemental insurance plan is within the first six months of applying for Medicare, there are twelve Medicare supplemental health coverage plans available and each is regulated by the government and must cover the same areas of healthcare. I recommend shopping around for the lowest price and a great resource to start is MedicareSupplementalInsurance.com Remember that the services, because they are regulated and provide the same healthcare services to everyone, won’t be modified. You main focus should be the cost of Medicare insurance and the rate increase throughout your lifetime. Some plans may initially be more expensive; however, there will be a slow increase in the plan’s rate over the life of the policy.
The benefits of Medicare supplemental insurance are that it keeps the cost low on out-of-pocket expenses, it cannot be canceled provided the premiums are paid on time, it allows choice of doctors and hospitals and the coverage goes with the person regardless of where they travel to in the United States.
If costs of paying the difference between actual medical costs and Medicare and Medicare Part B are overwhelming, or the medical stability of an individual may require help in paying the difference, a Medigap Plan is a great choice.
In a Medigap Plan C, coverage includes:
- Co-insurance for Medicare Part A hospital costs and an extra 365 days after Medicare benefits are exhausted.
- Co-payments for Medicare Part B coverage (coinsurance), not including preventative care services.
- The first 3 pints of blood.
- Co-payments for skilled nursing (facility) co-insurance coverage.
- The deductible for Medicare Part A & B
- Medicare insurance preventative care co-payments (coinsurance) coverage.
- Coverage for foreign travel emergency care (up to the limits of the plan).
- The deductible for Medicare Part A hospice care
There are a lot of choices out there. Take the time to talk to those older in your life and learn about their health and the available options.
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