Understanding Your Medicare Insurance Choices

Medicare InsuranceMedicare Insurance and the 2 main ways to get your Medicare coverageOriginal Medicare (Part A and Part B) or a Medicare Advantage Plan (Part C).  Some people get additional coverage, like Medicare Prescription Drug coverage (Part D) or Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap).  Use these steps to help you decide what coverage you want:

Step 1:  Decide if you want Original Medicare or a Medicare Advantage Plan (like an HMO or PPO).  What’s Original Medicare?  Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Part B (Medical Insurance).  Who provides coverage?  Medicare.  How do you choose your providers?  You have your choice of doctors, hospitals, and other providers that accept Medicare.  How much does it cost?  Most people pay the Part B premium of $144.60 each month, if you sign up for Part B when you’re first eligible.  Generally, you pay a deductible and coinsurance % for your Part A and Part B services.  If you choose to buy a Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) policy (see Step 3), your Medigap policy may pay some or all of these costs.

You can choose a Medicare Advantage (MA) plan.  Here are some things you should know:  What’s Medicare Advantage?  Sometimes called “Part C” – includes both Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Part B (Medical Insurance).  Many plans also include prescription drug coverage.  Who provides coverage?  Private insurance companies approved by Medicare.  How do you choose your providers?  In most MA plans, you need to use plan doctors, hospitals, and other providers, or you pay more or all of the costs.  How much does it cost?  Most people pay the Part B premium of $144.60 each month, if you signed up for Part B when you’re first eligible.  You usually pay $0 or a small monthly premium for your MA Plan (in addition to your monthly Part B premium).  You may pay a co-payment or coinsurance % for covered services.  Costs, extra coverage, and rules vary by plan.

Step 2:  Decide if you want prescription drug coverage (Part D).  If you chose Original Medicare in Step 1 and you want prescription drug coverage, you must choose and join a Medicare Prescription Drug PlanHow much does it cost?  You usually pay a monthly premium.  The National average is approximately $33 per month.  Who provides coverage?  These plans are run by private companies approved by Medicare.  How do you choose your pharmacies?  Each plan has a list of approved pharmacies.  If you chose a Medicare Advantage (MA) Plan in Step 1 and you want prescription drug coverage, and it’s offered by your MA plan, in most cases you must get it through your plan.

Step 3:  Decide if you want supplemental coverage.  You chose Original Medicare in Step 1 and you want supplemental coverage.  What’s a Medicare Supplement Plan?  You may want to get coverage to help pay some or all of the health care costs that Original Medicare doesn’t cover, like co-payments, coinsurance %, and deductibles.  The plans are standardized (same for each company) and are: A-G and K-N. C&F are offered as select plans and F is available as a high deductible.  Costs usually range from $49-$250, depending on: age, zip code, gender, tobacco, and under writing. Premiums are in addition to Part B.  Who provides coverage?  You can choose to buy a Medigap policy from a private company that provides secondary coverage.  How do you choose your providers?  Like Original Medicare, in most cases you may choose any provider, hospital or other providers that accept Medicare.  You may not have BOTH a Supplement and an Advantage Plan.

There are Options Other Than Medicare

Other Options:  In addition to Original Medicare or an MA Plan, you may be able to join other types of Medicare health plans.  YouMedicare Insurance may be able to save money or have other choices if you have limited income and resources.  You may also have other coverage, like employer or union, military or veterans’ benefits.

Have Medicare Questions? Contact Insurance Options, Inc. today!

Insurance Options, Inc., is a general insurance agency offering Medicare insurance plans.  We can meet you in our office, in your home or you may attend one of our educational or sales meetings. We provide personal attention, consider all your individual needs and tailor a plan to fit your personal needs. We do not charge a consultation fee as we are compensated directly from the insurance companies. As an added bonus you get us as your local agent available to answer your questions year round! Would you like to further explore your Medicare insurance options? Complete our online request form.

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Our Reviews

My husband and I were referred to Kathy Thousand by a neighbor while being inundated with emails and mail from everywhere. We promptly made an appointment and were extremely pleased with her thorough knowledge as we were having a hard time on our own.I highly recommend Insurance Options and especially Kathy who made for an easy transition in the retirement phase of our lives.Roland & Elaine Figueredo
Elaine Figueredo
Elaine Figueredo
21:56 02 Nov 20
Kathy was fantastic! She answered all our questions and helped us navigate a real mess with great ease. She overcame obstacles that we couldn't deal with and we now have a great Medicare plan!
Lynne Woodman
Lynne Woodman
15:47 23 Oct 20
Kathy is professional, thorough and personable, too. A delight to work with to take care of my needs. Highly recommended!
Joe Kearns
Joe Kearns
20:21 20 Oct 20
I spent almost 2 hours with Kathy Thousand reviewing all of the supplemental insurance plans that fit me. Well worth the time!! I just recently retired and started my Social Security. She was very thorough and answered all of my questions. She is very good at what she does. I would recommend her to my family and friends.
Shirley Wheeler
Shirley Wheeler
19:45 05 Aug 20
All of my questions were answered with patience and professionalism, my needs and requests were addressed too. The office was clean and welcoming with protection for the Covid 19. I look forward to continue doing business there.
France Paulsen
France Paulsen
15:33 10 Jul 20
Melanie Mellars
Melanie Mellars
12:47 01 May 20
20 years ago the Thousand's wrote our health insurance plan which I have kept all these years. I can't believe the time has come for a new chapter, Medicare! Once again I feel confident that Kathy has done a wonderful job of finding the coverage's right for this phase of our insurance needs as well. Thank you for easing my apprehension regarding these insurance changes as well!
Paulette Halbrehder
Paulette Halbrehder
18:35 30 May 19
Margaret Schruers
Margaret Schruers
15:37 28 Nov 18
Complex...made very simple. Kathy Thousand was/is the best in her advice regarding Medicare Supplemental plans. Normally, choosing a plan is very complex and confusing...in her case Kathy explained in simple terms what care is best for me.I would give her 10 stars if that was possible!
Chuck Lind
Chuck Lind
15:00 25 Sep 18
Highly recommend.
Patricia Read
Patricia Read
11:09 23 May 18
Thanks Kathy for all of your help and guidance. I was defiantly going in the wrong direction. I guess everyones situation is different. It pays to see a pro.😲
Bill Mcginnis
Bill Mcginnis
20:38 21 May 18
Kathy was great, very helpful and took the time to educate me on Medicare supplements. I highly recommended mm no here.
Steven Huff
Steven Huff
16:42 09 May 18
Linda Hand
Linda Hand
20:06 04 May 18
I can’t say enough about the assistance with Kathy Thousands from Insurance Options, Inc. My husband and I are newcomers to Florida and MEDICARE. Kathy took as much time as we needed to make a choice for which Medicare supplement to take. She is a wealth of knowledge and information about all insurance options. Several weeks later, after we make our choice, we had more questions and again, she took her time and reviewed our program to ensure we were comfortable with our supplement choice. If you need any guidance with Medicare supplements or other insurance, please give her a call.....you won’t regret it.Five Star company, and Customer Service.....
Gail Mueller
Gail Mueller
16:00 24 Apr 18