Choosing A Medicare Plan
Medicare is confusing to most people. It doesn’t have to be that way.
You don’t need to be an expert to chose a Medicare plan. But, you do need some basic tools to feel confident that you made a good decision. I’ll give you two examples: 1. Do you know what the government (Medicare) does for you and what is provided through your insurance company? And 2. Do you know if your insurance is a Supplement plan (Medigap) or an Advantage plan?
It is important to know, because Medicare by itself does not cover everything and these plans work very differently. The advertisements on television and in your mail box are trying to persuade you to choose one type of plan or the other. Do you know what they are selling?
Insurance companies can offer both Supplement plans (Medigap) and Advantage plans. So, just knowing what company you have doesn’t tell you much about how your plan works. The rules are different for the two types of plans. Premiums, copays, and networks are all different.
As mentioned earlier, Medicare does not cover everything. There are services that Medicare does not cover. Prescription drugs, routine dental, routine vision, and routine hearing to name a few. If you have coverage for these services, it is through a private insurance company, not the government.
There are also out-of-pocket costs associated with using Medicare. Copays and deductibles, coinsurances and even excess charges. Supplements (Medigap) and Advantage plans can both help pay these costs for you. Knowing which type of plan you have will inform you on what your responsibilities are.
Do you know what type of plan you have and why? Do you know how it compares to any of the other types of plans that are available?
Being a broker for the past 15 years, I try to bring clarity to these questions. I work with all the different types of Medicare plans and most of the reputable companies who offer them. I don’t have a bias for or against any of them. You should choose the plan that suits you best. I simply want you to understand what you choose and the rules you’re signing up for. If we can accomplish that, you will tend to be much happier with your decisions.
In addition, having a trusted agent to call when life happens is crucial. Understanding how it “should” work in a perfect world is one thing. Reality is often much more complicated. When life throws you a curve, you may not know how it affects your Medicare plan. You need a stress free way to be able to get your questions answered quickly.
I hope you have someone you trust. Someone you can call with your big questions and your little ones. If not, give me a call. I would be happy to help if I can. No strings attached.
Matt Monk is a health insurance broker and manger with Kellogg Insurance Marketing. He specializes in Medicare plans and believes that people can make their own insurance decisions and be confident with their choices. He also knows a little help from someone who’s worked in the industry for 15 years doesn’t hurt! You can contact Matt at 928-308-0903 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please tune in to Part 2 set to publish Wednesday October 24th, 2018; right her in the news center as well as in Wickenburg Sun.
WCH is happy to host an open Q & A Session on Insurance Information – November 7th, 2018; 10 AM in the Hospital Activity Room.
RSVP to 928-668-5510
Session is lead in Collaboration by:
Roger Rose, RPh, Director of Pharmacy Services | Wickenburg Community Hospital
Michelle Brinkley, Patient Access Manager | Wickenburg Community Hosptial
Matt Monk, Health Insurance Broker and Manager | Kellogg Insurance Marketing
Brian Coutts, Program Director National Membership Sales | PHI Air Medical