This week I would like to address some frequently asked questions regarding Medicare, Medicare Supplements and Medicare Advantage. Here are the top 5.
- Does Medicare cover all my medical bills?
No, it does not cover 100% of your medical costs. Part A requires you to pay a per benefit period deductible to hospitals and copayments for nursing home care. Part B has an annual deductible and coinsurance of 20%. You will need a Medicare Supplement plan if you want to reduce your out-of-pocket spending.
- Can I change my Medicare Supplement plan at any time?
Yes, you can switch your Medicare Supplement plan at any time. However, remember, if you have health issues or pre-existing conditions you can be denied.
If you have a Medicare Advantage plan you can only change plans during the annual enrollment period, but no health questions will be asked.
- Can I see any doctor I want?
Medicare does not have a network you just need to make sure your doctor or hospital accepts Medicare. If you have a Medicare Supplement plan you can see any doctor nationwide, this is the upside these plans. Medicare Advantage on the other hand has a network you must follow; you cannot choose your care team. This is the downside of these plans.
- What about dental and vision, is this covered under Medicare?
No, original Medicare does not cover dental and vision unless it is considered a medical condition or a medical emergency or traumatic injury. You can purchase a separate policy to cover these or if you are enrolled in Medicare Advantage these benefits are often included.
- Can I purchase just a Medicare Supplement plan?
No, you must have Medicare Part A and Part B before you can purchase a supplement plan or Part D (prescription drug plan). Medicare Advantage plans provide all three. Part A, Part B and Part D.