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Sun Nov 10, 2019, 04:39 PM

Medicare Sucks! TeamDU Rocks!

Last edited Sun Nov 10, 2019, 10:24 PM - Edit history (3)

Update: Thank you for providing information, insights & your personal experiences/opinions about how to investigate Medicare, Medicare Advantage Plans & Medicare Supplement Plan options.

Original post

I think Medicare sucks.

Itís still Faux Insurance with a catchy name. For example, My UHC Medicare Advantage Plan co-pay for each physical therapy session is $50. I think Plain Medicare is $40. So I donít go, canít afford & do my best to self treat. This sucks!

The AARP United Health Care HMO & PPO Plans suck. A nightmare in every way. Iíve tried both.

Seniors pay $130 a month for Medicare A & B, which is garnished from their paltry SS checks. This sucks.

I pay an additional monthly fee for Prescription Part D because I didnít understand I would be FINED for LIFE if I didnít opt in at age 65. Fined for life! This also sucks. An antibiotic co-pay was $28 wth! My Costco Membership gave me a better deal when I was pre-Medicare age!

Look when a vulnerable, unemployable older person is sick or injured, can the billionaires & politicians spare a dime? Can the United States if America afford the needs of the elderly? Apparently not! This sucks.

WTH is wrong with the hearts & minds of the greedy, the privileged & the powerful and those who vote for them?

Only laws can protect a country from humankindís worst instincts.

Laws and a citizenryís commitment to be informed, engaged, and VOTE without which the worst-of-humankind will steal or has stolen our power: Our heartfelt desire to take care of one another.

In the US, The Worst-of-Humankindís worst instincts have ruled long enough (since 1980ís Reagan crew & their financiers)

Medicare sucks!

Otherwise, I would not be facing my demise without using the unaffordable health care I pay $130 a month for.

Why? Because, like millions of my American Family, I live in fear my life savings could easily be wiped out.

I also fear I might stroke out from the stress of trying to figure out how to thread the needles of AARP UHC Medicare Advantage PPO/HMOís seemingly endless rules & exceptions & insane paper billing practices.

It took 8 months to resolve 4 Dr visits in January! My nerves were fried because of the paperwork & phone calls needed to thread the billing needle. This didnít help my health!

A miraculously healthy lifespan has the disadvantage of being Faux Health Insurance ignorant. When did this horrid system begin?

I weep for my American Family that is buried in medical debt & paperwork because of the misfortune of illness or accident. Shame on the USA!

Americanís & seniorsí life spans will begin to shorten for lack of medical attention. This sucks!

Mine might & frankly that makes this diehard empath happy. Bygones! 🥰

Perhaps that is

ďThe Worst-of-Humankindís PlanĒ

Hereís a true story of how the ďworst of humankindĒ have/are attacking the Middle Class & the family. No wonder so many are angry & depressed! The worst are hell bent on grinding the best under their heartless hateful heels!

Elizabeth Warrenís best explanation imo.





Perhaps it could be helpful if a diary series were launched to help the community understand options during this enrollment time for Medicare

I found Medicare Supplement Plan information for my area!

I went to www.Medicare.gov/Medigap chose the option to NOT give my email or create account & just entered my zip code.

11 Names of insurers offering Plan F are listed. I have never heard of any of them

https://share.icloud.com/photos/0nugLksglp3fn2lYySOIT7CtA

Listed here

https://share.icloud.com/photos/0Gl4euHgxViY8er3Qu6-dL18A

110 replies, 3082 views

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Arrow 110 replies Author Time Post
Reply Medicare Sucks! TeamDU Rocks! (Original post)
OhNo-Really Sunday OP
backtoblue Sunday #1
Dan Sunday #2
OhNo-Really Sunday #3
Dan Sunday #5
OhNo-Really Sunday #9
Dan Sunday #25
OhNo-Really Sunday #30
vsrazdem Sunday #29
OhNo-Really Sunday #32
vsrazdem Sunday #48
OhNo-Really Sunday #52
Dan Sunday #63
vsrazdem Sunday #68
Dan Sunday #71
vsrazdem Sunday #73
northoftheborder Yesterday #107
OhNo-Really 22 hrs ago #109
broiles Yesterday #104
Frustratedlady Sunday #4
llmart Sunday #24
Frustratedlady Sunday #75
matt819 Sunday #6
DURHAM D Sunday #7
JustABozoOnThisBus Sunday #19
krawhitham Sunday #44
dflprincess Sunday #79
JustABozoOnThisBus Yesterday #91
OhNo-Really Sunday #34
krawhitham Sunday #46
OhNo-Really Sunday #55
pangaia Sunday #85
pangaia Sunday #87
DURHAM D Sunday #60
OhNo-Really Sunday #67
pangaia Sunday #86
Dan Sunday #69
OhNo-Really Sunday #12
llmart Sunday #27
OhNo-Really Sunday #35
OhNo-Really Sunday #56
llmart Sunday #58
OhNo-Really Sunday #62
vsrazdem Sunday #72
llmart Sunday #77
vsrazdem Sunday #81
llmart Yesterday #93
vsrazdem Yesterday #94
llmart Yesterday #95
airplaneman Sunday #65
Blue_true Sunday #13
shanti Sunday #14
yellowdogintexas Sunday #37
dhol82 Sunday #8
OhNo-Really Sunday #10
yellowdogintexas Sunday #45
OhNo-Really Sunday #11
dhol82 Sunday #76
OhNo-Really Sunday #78
Blue_true Sunday #15
OhNo-Really Sunday #36
Blue_true Sunday #42
yellowdogintexas Sunday #47
OhNo-Really Sunday #82
emmaverybo Sunday #17
OhNo-Really Sunday #38
leftyladyfrommo Sunday #16
Sherman A1 Sunday #18
OhNo-Really Sunday #41
Sherman A1 Sunday #74
Blue_true Yesterday #97
Phaedrus1776 Sunday #20
yellowdogintexas Sunday #49
Blue_true Yesterday #98
KWR65 Sunday #21
mnhtnbb Sunday #22
llmart Sunday #23
OhNo-Really Sunday #57
llmart Sunday #59
Blue_true Yesterday #99
dlk Sunday #26
Backseat Driver Sunday #28
Habibi Sunday #31
yellowdogintexas Sunday #50
OhNo-Really Sunday #51
stopbush Sunday #33
elleng Sunday #39
Iggo Sunday #40
democratisphere Sunday #43
Triloon Sunday #66
democratisphere Sunday #70
krawhitham Sunday #53
MichMan Sunday #64
womanofthehills Sunday #54
Hoyt Sunday #84
Blue_true Yesterday #100
Hekate Sunday #61
Blue_true Yesterday #101
Hermit-The-Prog Sunday #80
Blue_true Yesterday #102
Hermit-The-Prog Yesterday #108
pangaia Sunday #83
Blue_true Yesterday #103
I_UndergroundPanther Sunday #88
nancy1942 Yesterday #89
OhNo-Really Yesterday #90
Blue_true Yesterday #105
llmart Yesterday #92
Blue_true Yesterday #106
cilla4progress Yesterday #96
PoindexterOglethorpe 22 hrs ago #110

Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 04:42 PM

1. Rec and bookmarking to watch later

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 04:44 PM

2. Interesting

The wife and I use Medicare (not the private insurance plan that you are using with Advantage) and we love it. I like it much better than my former employee health insurance plan., and I do not have to worry about being bankrupt.

Of course, I am curious as to what alternative program would you propose to Medicare?

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Response to Dan (Reply #2)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 04:50 PM

3. My parents had TriCare.

It was awesome & uncomplicated

What is your co-pay for physical therapy?

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #3)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 04:54 PM

5. Wife says that

we have no co-pay. Our supplemental pays all co-pays.

I just asked her.

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Response to Dan (Reply #5)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 05:14 PM

9. Thank you. So a Sup Plan too

Will you ask her which one & how much a month. Iím trying to figure this stuff out.

My brain fries at each attempt 🥴

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #9)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:17 PM

25. United Health Care through AARP

And the cost is approximately $213 per person for the supplemental, Plan F.

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Response to Dan (Reply #25)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:39 PM

30. Wow! $130 plus $235 x 2 a month? Holy cow 🐮

I appreciate you asking & sharing.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #9)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:33 PM

29. I did not go with an Advantage plan for just the reasons you mentioned. I went with regular

medicare and a supplemental. I chose the G plan with a 185 deductible and I pay about 130 monthly for this. It pays all copays that Medicare does not cover after a 185 deductible per year. It does not matter who you contract for with the supplemental as they are required by law to offer the exact same services regardless of company, so just go with the cheapest one in your area. There are other medicare GAP plans that are cheaper, but you will have more out of pocket expenses. The F plan covers your total deductible, but that is being phased out so the premiums will eventualy be higher as the pool of patient's will go down.

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Response to vsrazdem (Reply #29)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:42 PM

32. Thank you so much. This is very helpful

The bad salesman steered me in the wrong direction. Now at age 71 1/2 the Supplemental will cost more than $135 right?

I hope to post a Medicare Info article with your help

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #32)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:10 PM

48. Not necessarily, but you need to talk to someone about getting back on regular Medicare and

a GAP plan, if you want to get out Medicare Advantage. Here is some information for you. You need to check and see if you will require medical underwriting to convert back to regular Medicare with GAP coverage. The supplementals will vary according to your region, but if you decide on a GAP plan, just pick the cheapest one, as it is required to cover all the same benefits. I know some people who go with BCBC because they have always had that insurance and are paying 80 more a month for it, which I think is crazy, because they all have to cover the same things.


https://www.mymedicarematters.org/after-enrollment/time-to-re-evaluate/

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Response to vsrazdem (Reply #48)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:15 PM

52. Awesome. Will do!

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Response to vsrazdem (Reply #29)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:42 PM

63. As I understand it, Plan F recipients

Will be grandfathered

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Response to Dan (Reply #63)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:46 PM

68. Yes they will be. However, no new participants will be enrolling, so the pool of premium

payments will be decreasing, which means the premiums for that plan will probably be greatly increasing in the future.

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Response to vsrazdem (Reply #68)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:50 PM

71. Personally I doubt it, because

This is Medicare, not the private insurers under Advantage. My opinion and even if it does we will pay the price.

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Response to Dan (Reply #71)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:54 PM

73. No, the supplemental plans G and F are underwritten by private insurance companies.

GAP policies all have to provide the same coverage per plan, that is the only Medicare requirement. They are written by different insurance companies and have different premiums. Check with an insurance broker or check out the differences between G and F. Everywhere I have checked stated that the premiums on the F plans will go up because the pool of patient's will be decreasing. The good news is that if you are on regular medicare, you can change your GAP plans without any medical underwriting or issues if you have always had regular Medicare with a GAP plan.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #3)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 08:09 PM

107. I also have TriCare for my supplemental insurance to Medicare.

I have VERY low to none prescription bills, and practically no bills for anything - from surgeries with hospital stays, to regular checkups. It's amazing! I haven't had any huge medical emergencies since going on Medicare - such as cancer, or heart surgery, so can't testify to those situations. I've never been turned down by any doctor because of my insurance. I do have to pay for eye and dental care, which is expensive.

I wish everyone could access a similar supplement to Medicare. My mother had AARP and Medicare, yet paid $500 a month or more for her prescriptions.

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Response to northoftheborder (Reply #107)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 10:38 PM

109. I wish everyone could have TriCare

My parents did. You earned it! Thank you 🙏

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Response to Dan (Reply #2)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:52 PM

104. I agree, Medicare has been great.

I have United Healthcare supplement, I walked out of the hospital after surgery with nothing due.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 04:54 PM

4. I can't imagine what kind of insurance you have on beyond Medicare.

I have a deductible at the beginning of the year, but that is it. I don't pay co-pays or much of anything else and have had a lot of medical issues. Are you paying the balance left after Medicare/supplemental is done paying their share? Are you being billed by your hospital or doctor for those amounts? That's the only thing I can figure.

If so, don't do that. Medicare never pays the total amount. If you aren't billed directly for it, don't pay it. It takes several months to work through the Medicare payments and supplemental. Be patient.

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Response to Frustratedlady (Reply #4)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:14 PM

24. The poster stated he/she has an Advantage plan, not a supplemental.

They are NOT the same thing. A supplemental plan pays much more than an Advantage plan.

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Response to llmart (Reply #24)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 09:02 PM

75. Thanks. I haven't explored the various plans for years, so I don't know what it is, either.

I'd certainly get rid of it.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 04:57 PM

6. Thanks for this

My wife and I are up for Medicare next year. TBH I have no idea what to do or what it will cost. And I havenít found a reliable source for that information.

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Response to matt819 (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 05:10 PM

7. Regular Medicare with a supplemental (Plan F for me) is the best way to go.

Plus Part D for prescriptions.

Medicare Advantage Plans (private insurance) appear to be cheaper but if you need to use it you usually get a surprise. I know a lot of seniors who are pissed and confused because they thought they had good cheap coverage but one major operation or illness has put them in a tailspin.

Most of them don't even understand that they are not on regular Medicare. At our local hospital there are insurance agents available to help people decide on coverage. They are not government employees obviously but soooo many people don't realize they are just regular salesmen working on commission. Where I live the best way to get good information is at the Department of Aging.

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Response to DURHAM D (Reply #7)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 06:22 PM

19. Plan F is nice, but no longer available to new subscribers.

Current Plan F subscribers can keep it, but watch for increases as the average age of us "Plan-F'ers" goes up.

And, new Medicare users should get Part D, even if you don't take medicines. If you enroll for the first time at some time after you're 65, there is a permanent monthly penalty. So, if you don't use medicine, get the cheapest plan available.

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Response to JustABozoOnThisBus (Reply #19)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:06 PM

44. G is the new F, same coverage besides it does not cover the $185 deductable from Part B

F was really never a good option, most companies charge a lot more in annually premiums than the $185 it saved

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Response to JustABozoOnThisBus (Reply #19)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 09:45 PM

79. As I understand it, plan F will be available if you were at least on Plan A by Jan 1,2020

This came as a relief to me as I've had A for a year & 1/2 and hope to remain on my employers plan until at least 70 (it covers more & costs me less than Medicare will). Though there have been layoffs where I work & I'm getting nervous.

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Response to dflprincess (Reply #79)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 05:40 AM

91. That's good news. I thought it was already cut off.

It's a good plan, keeps things simple, though it costs a bit more than "G".

I hated "employment insecurity". I had good employment for many years, then finished my working years on a number of short-term "1099-type" contract jobs. They can be good jobs, too, but always a bit more tense because of the short-term nature.

Good luck with your work.

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Response to DURHAM D (Reply #7)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:50 PM

34. Advantage Plans are no charge. The amount deducted from your

SS check just goes to the private insurers

But the advantage plans are HMO or PPO which is a huge complicated hassle and involving pre-authorizations etc and if not bad enough UHC delegates management to another agency so the billing is insane. It was a vertical learning curve for me.

If you can afford, get supplemental insurance ASAP. If you canít affor a Supplement Plan the advantage Plan might be better than just Medicare BuT do the homework or seek out a professional to help you that is not selling plans

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #34)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:08 PM

46. Advantage Plans are the worst

They seems cheaper at 1st but they will nickle and dime you to death if you have any health issues

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Response to krawhitham (Reply #46)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:21 PM

55. I agree. All I had was a back rash 🙄

8 months of monthly bills from docs & labs while insurance payments wafted there way to pay my 4 invoices! What a waste of trees & $$

The invoices started showing 60 days over due in spite of several phone conversations.

I have super super credit rating so this stressed me out

Ended up in 3 way phone calls to stop bills going to collections.

It was awful

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Response to krawhitham (Reply #46)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 10:37 PM

85. Not me.

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Response to krawhitham (Reply #46)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 10:42 PM

87. Not mine..

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #34)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:35 PM

60. I don't think you meant this response for me. ???? nt

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Response to DURHAM D (Reply #60)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:45 PM

67. I'm easily flummoxed on my tiny iPhone 🥴

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #34)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 10:41 PM

86. I gave advantafe with mvp and sometimes i switch to excellus..

What do u mean adv plans are no charge? Of course they charge. I pay medicare the $135, or whatever it is, and in 2020 mvp will be $39.

I have NONE of the hassles you describe... none at all.

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Response to DURHAM D (Reply #7)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:48 PM

69. That happened to some friends of mine

Husband ended up with a serious illness (sadly, he died) and they ended up paying way more than $10,000 out of pocket using the Advantage type program. For the extra benefits they offer it does not offset when they choose not to cover something.

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Response to matt819 (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 05:29 PM

12. It's so complicated cause Confusion Hides Corruption


Thatís why I am reaching out here. Talk to elders in your area as Supplement plans differ from state to state or so it seems.

SIGN UP for Part D Prescription coverage to avoid being

Fined for the rest of your life

At age 65 I had never needed meds except a $6 copay blood pressure med at Costco
So I didnít opt in for Part D

I had no idea I would be fined for life until a few years later. I instantly opted in as the fine increases each year. I now pay $35 a month for my $6 med 🤯. Somehow the only other med I needed this year, a generic antibiotic on the market since the 1950s wasnít covered 🔥😳. $28 at Costco. It would have cost me $6 without coverage

Itís this kind of crap that has voters confused or even enraged

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #12)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:30 PM

27. The year I was eligible for Medicare, I received a booklet as does everyone else.

It's up to you to read up on the basics. It clearly tells you that if you don't sign up for a Part D prescription plan at 65 you will be penalized when you do sign up for it. I don't take any meds and didn't back when I turned 65 either, but I signed up for Part D because of the penalty. I still have only used it twice. However, I also know that as I get older or if I get a serious illness somewhere down the road, I may need costly meds.

It's a risk you take if you don't make sure you are covered for what may happen - just like most insurances. You carry homeowners insurance that will cover you to rebuild your house if it burns down, but the chances of that happening may be rather remote. However, do you want to be without that if it actually does happen?

My advice - don't nickel and dime yourself when purchasing health insurance. I will give you my classic example of what happened to me. I am and always have been an extremely healthy person. I have lived a mostly healthy lifestyle my entire adult life. It's just a part of my life. I don't take any meds at 70 and never have, except for the occasional antibiotic over the years. I don't go to doctors on a regular basis and my blood pressure has always been low. I have always weighed about what I do now. I exercise on a daily basis and always have. Two years ago I developed macular degeneration and in order to not lose the sight in my left eye I needed monthly injections that cost over $2,000 for each one. I did that for one year. If I wouldn't have had my Medicare Supplemental Plan G I would have been SOL. As it is, I didn't have to pay one penny.

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Response to llmart (Reply #27)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:53 PM

35. Lesson Learned ☺️

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Response to llmart (Reply #27)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:26 PM

56. I'm happy you saved your sight!

I own a lovely home & have savings without which Iíd be SOL too.

I donít want them taken from me.

I think I qualify for G. Sounds like $$ weíll spent

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #56)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:30 PM

58. I don't think you really have to "qualify". It's just one of the supplemental plan choices.

Basically, since they're doing away with Plan F, Plan G is the next best thing. It's exactly the same as Plan F only the $183 a year deductible.

I figured I can afford to pay the $183 every year. It's worth it for peace of mind.

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Response to llmart (Reply #58)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:40 PM

62. Definitely!

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Response to llmart (Reply #58)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:50 PM

72. If you did not choose regular Medicare when you initially enrolled and instead chose an Advantage

plan, you can defnintely go back to regular medicare, but you will most likely need to go through medical underwriting in order to get a GAP plan. That's just how the supplementals work. If you don't have major health issues it is no problem, but if you have ongoing medical issues, the premiums will probably be higher than they would have been if you had chosen it originally.

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Response to vsrazdem (Reply #72)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 09:36 PM

77. No, I didn't have to go through medical underwriting.

I had an Advantage plan for 3 years and then changed to a supplemental plan.

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Response to llmart (Reply #77)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 09:57 PM

81. There is information below regarding Medicap coverage.

https://www.medicare.gov/supplements-other-insurance/when-can-i-buy-medigap

Buy a policy when you're first eligible
The best time to buy a Medigap policy is during your 6-month Medigap open enrollment period. During that time you can buy any Medigap policy sold in your state, even if you have health problems. This period automatically starts the month you're 65 and enrolled in Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance). After this enrollment period, you may not be able to buy a Medigap policy. If you're able to buy one, it may cost more.




https://www.elderlawanswers.com/entering-and-leaving-medicare-advantage-plans-12268

When you return to regular Medicare, you have the right to go back to the same Medigap policy you had before you joined the Medicare Advantage plan, if the same insurance company you had before still sells it. If the policy is no longer available, you have a guaranteed right to buy a Medigap policy designated A, B, C, F, K or L that is sold in your state by any insurance company as long as you had Medicare Advantage for less than a year. In these circumstances the insurers cannot refuse you coverage as long as you apply for the Medigap policy no later than 63 days after coverage from your Medicare Advantage plan terminates. The insurance company is required to by law to sell or offer you a Medigap policy even if you have health problems (called "pre-existing conditions". If you had Medicaid Advantage for a year or more or wait longer than 63 days, you can apply but you arenít guaranteed of acceptance.

Plan Withdrawals from Medicare

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Response to vsrazdem (Reply #81)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:34 AM

93. you may not be able to buy a Medigap policy. If you're able to buy one, it may cost more.

The word "may" is a qualifier. It doesn't say you "will" not be able to buy or it "will" cost more.

In my case, neither was true. This past year my Plan G with United Healthcare was $101 per month. My drug plan through them was $28.

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Response to llmart (Reply #93)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:49 AM

94. That's a pretty decent rate. The cheapest G I could get was 137 a month.

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Response to vsrazdem (Reply #94)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 10:15 AM

95. I get a bit of a private grant fund subsidy in my state.

I think it amounts to $25 a month towards the supplemental, nothing towards the Part D. I'm sure the monthly premium will go up a little for next year. It's still well worth it.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #12)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:44 PM

65. Once you give Costco your medicare D card

They are required to charge you more than their cash price and cannot back it out.
I had to hear the argument "we cannot undercut your insurance or it would be unfair to your insurance company" So I had to pay $38 a month instead of the cash price of $30 to protect the insurance company - Every step is a rigged system.

-Airplane

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Response to matt819 (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 05:29 PM

13. Post an OP here.

My oldest brother is on Medicare. He has had several hospital stays, no bills.

I suggest that you post an OP here that specifically ask people what they chose to do when the signed up for Medicare. My brother signed up for Medicare Part A and B. The Part B was supplemental and came with a prescription plan.

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Response to matt819 (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 05:29 PM

14. I'm up for it next year too

Now I have my employer-covered Kaiser (I'm retired, and got this perk after 20 years on the job), which I had when working. I'm hoping to segue into Medicare still with Kaiser. I think it's under the medicare advantage plan? Hopefully, it will be seamless.

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Response to matt819 (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:57 PM

37. Medicare.gov is the best place to start

Be advised, in a very short time you are both going to be receiving tons of stuff in the mail from every Advantage plan in your area, every Medigap in your area and every Plan D plan in your area.

I used to say that if I could turn them into tile I could do the floors in my entire house. Then every year, around late August, you get this same stuff again due to open enrollment.

They know when you turn 65 because they have access to SS records, and they all want you to change your plan and go with theirs after you have been on Medicare for a year.

Remember this: traditional Medicare (Part B) is not designed to provide profit for private insurance companies; it isn't supporting an obscene salary for the CEO and other top management like all those commercial companies. It has the lowest cost per claim, lowest error ratio, fastest turnaround time and highest customer satisfaction in the industry. Even though the allowable charges for physician services are lower, they know that the payment they receive every two weeks will be accurate, on time and they won't have to hassle over all those prior approvals and other junk.

Medicare Advantage looks good on the surface but it is designed to make money; so is Part D It is a travesty that Part D forces us to pay outrageous amounts for our medications. If I could figure it out logistically, I would take a trip to Nogales on my way to visit my daughter in PHoenix and stock up on my meds. And get any expensive dental work on the side.

I worked in the Medical Insurance industry for 40+ years, in claims. My first stint was processing Part B Claims and I loved it. I have worked with PPO, HMO, small group and individual and third party administration and Medicare is still my preferred plan.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 05:11 PM

8. It looks like AARP is trying to get their people to go onto the United Health Care HMO or PPO

They seem to be pushing real hard. Bragging about zero copays on everything.
Only problem is that they are HMO or PPO.
I prefer to be able to choose my doctor and go when and where I wish - I therefore pay through the nose for my supplemental plan. I will continue with this until I canít afford it any longer.
Medical care in this country sucks for the average consumer.

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Response to dhol82 (Reply #8)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 05:23 PM

10. These plans suck!

Thatís why I am reaching out

SIGN UP for Part D Prescription coverage to avoid being

Fined for the rest of your life

At age 65 I had never needed meds except a $6 copay blood pressure med at Costco
So I didnít opt in for Part D

I had no idea I would be fined for life until a few years later. I instantly opted in as the fine increases each year. I now pay $35 a month for my $6 med 🤯. Somehow the only other med I needed this year, a generic antibiotic on the market since the 1950s wasnít covered 🔥😳. $28 at Costco. It would have cost me $6 without coverage

Itís this kind of crap that has voters confused or even enraged imo

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #10)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:07 PM

45. there are some pharmaceutical discount cards available

which can be a big help with any non covered or over priced drugs. If it is a better deal, you just skip filing it under insurance and use the discount instead. I think they are usually on the counter at Walgreens back in the pharmacy.

Also, carefully review all the Part D plans using the tools in Medicare.gov My husband has a couple of pricey meds and he switched from UHC to an Aetna plan that dropped his premium significantly. I found an alternate plan in UHC which dropped my premium about $15 per month.

Plan D was designed to be confusing, make tons of $$ for Big Pharma, and there was no price negotiation allowed in the original arrangement. It was a Shrub deal; he could brag about Rx coverage for Seniors, while conveniently leaving out the part about the abysmal structure of the plan. Believe it or not, Part D has improved somewhat since its inception. (Thanks, Obama!)

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Response to dhol82 (Reply #8)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 05:25 PM

11. And they dropped Silver Sneakers

For a new program

The new program doesnít cover city & county recreational centers. Only Lifetime Fitness which is a 50 minute round trip drive. The rec center is a mile from home and no longer covered

United Health Care has lost its way

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #11)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 09:22 PM

76. I have their premium plan

It does not cover any recreational benefits of any kind. They are using those benefits to get people into their PPO and HMO plans. Only problem is what happens when they decide to change the parameters next year? Once you opt out of the better plans you canít get back on.
Iím staying with my overpriced plan for the time being - until I can see how it shakes out. I am truly fortunate that I can do so for the time being.
I am also very fortunate to be in NYC where virtually all the hospitals and their doctors accept Medicare. I can get the best in the world with no copay.

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Response to dhol82 (Reply #76)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 09:43 PM

78. I'm happy for you.

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Response to dhol82 (Reply #8)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 05:34 PM

15. My older brother chose a Doctor that was certified by Medicare when he signed up.

He has had good fortune, the Doctor is really good. You medical records automatically transfer to another Doctor. I honestly would not use a Doctor that doesn't accept Medicare, even with my under private insurance. My Doctor accepts both and he is excellent.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #15)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:56 PM

36. Mine accepts it. UHC dropped his group

Just found out. UHC changes things from year to year

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #36)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:03 PM

42. I think that you can switch from UHC. Give Medicare a call. nt

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #36)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:09 PM

47. sometimes the changes are because the provider does not want to

participate. An individual provider might but the group may override the drs who want to participate .This was part of the problem with the ACA, in the states which did not accept the Medicaid expansion

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Response to yellowdogintexas (Reply #47)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 10:29 PM

82. He used to see me for $45 cash

Annual chit chat check up

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Response to dhol82 (Reply #8)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 06:19 PM

17. Yes. So far no problems for me. Even provides urgent care and emergency out of the country.

Of course they can change as they please. We need to work on regulating these companies, regardless what plan is ultimately adopted as it will take years to implement

UHC will provide a case manager for over 65. I have not been denied any test or procedure. No deductible and 100 percent coverage with Medicare.

I could change to the ďCadillac,Ē but so far donít feel the need. AARP pushes it because it is relatively affordable, the program many retirement benefits will pay for, and one with a good track record with claims. Perfect, no? Lots of places will take it though. I am seen in our best local clinic. But if itís PPO you can be seen without referral.

We can talk M4All forever, but for years we will be stuck with choices we have now.

We have got to protect Medicare, Medicaid, work on ACA and private insurance regulations. The Repubs are committed to destroying what we have now. Medicaid payments for at home care are being cut in some states.

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Response to emmaverybo (Reply #17)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:00 PM

38. Yes. I agree ☝️

I think some of the like warm response to Medicare for All is that those who canít afford Supplement Insurance also canít afford what Medicare doesnít cover

Shame on the Republicans



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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 06:00 PM

16. My Medicare has been great.

I have no complaints. I have Humana Advantage. It has covered just about everything.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 06:22 PM

18. I completely disagree with your assessment .

I am on Medicare and use Essence Health Care as the supplement with no premium beyond the Medicare deduction from my Social Security. Yes, I must have my Primary refer me to any specialist, but my Primary visits are $5.00, Specialists $35.00, my 2 maintenance Rx's are free when I go to the pharmacy. I have a gym membership should I choose to use it. We get $45.00 (increasing to $100.00 next year) Over The Counter meds that are shipped to the house for free. I had an eye exam this summer ($35.00) and I am going to the Dentist this week ($35.00) for the 6 month thing.

I have no idea what plan you have as a supplement, but it seems like you need to do some serious research and rather quickly to get a better bargain for next year.

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Response to Sherman A1 (Reply #18)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:03 PM

41. I think each state is different

I will check to see if these are available Where on earth is that information found? I received the Info package but it just describes the lettered options

This should not be difficult. Iím not as sharp these days 😂

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #41)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:57 PM

74. Medicare.gov

Would be a good place to start and I would think that you would be deluged with mailings this time of year from the various insurance companies offering supplements.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #41)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:23 PM

97. It is not about states.

When my older brother was signing up, he went to the Medicare site, I saw that. The Medicare site rated providers for his Plan B. He chose a top rated provider and has not looked back. Medicare seemed to have put a lot of work into figuring out which providers provide Medicare patients with the best coverage for cost and completeness and rate those insurance providers on such. Plans cut across state lines, by brother has a Kentucky company and he lives and use Medicare in Florida. Like someone pointed out, you really need to do some research fast. More than likely a high rated plan has your Doctor available if he has passed Medicare standards on quality of care.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 06:44 PM

20. Medicare is medicare

I am sorry your experience has sucked.
Right now is the annual enrollment period.
Reach out to a local agent who can help you get your issues resolved. They are at every grocery store, WalMart, and most pharmacies. There is help out there.
And if costs are prohibitive apply for Medicaid, Medicare Savings Plans, or reach out to your local social services offices.

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Response to Phaedrus1776 (Reply #20)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:11 PM

49. Medicare.gov has online tools too

use them

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Response to yellowdogintexas (Reply #49)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:29 PM

98. Yes. And those tools were excellent for my brother.

Honestly, I am really surprised that people are saying Medicare sucks, that is totally NOT my brother's experience, Medicare has been the best thing that he has ever had healthwise.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 06:47 PM

21. For Medicare Part D if your assets are less then $12k you can apply for extra help

However, the alternative to Medicare is no medical insurance at all.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:10 PM

22. I have been pleased with Medicare

and the BCBS Federal supplemental plan which covers all copays and meds. I have had two joint replacements since being on Medicare-a hip and a knee-and paid nothing. No charges for doc visits, hospital fees or PT. I'm fortunate that my only regular med is for asthma and my last refill for 6 month supply cost me $5.
I'm also fortunate that as a widow I was eligible to get survivors benefits on my husband's civil service pension that includes the BCBS supplemental plan. The benefit pays a portion of the premium and the Feds deduct $243/mo from the total monthly pension benefit as my share of the premium. Believe me, having had two joint replacements completely covered has been worth the premiums.

The supplemental plan I have doesn't cover dental or vision, though. Having to pay out of pocket for about $5 grand of dental work 3 years ago to replace old crowns wasn't fun. But since then I've only had routine cleanings and checkups every 6 months. My prescription for glasses also changed this year and it hasn't been cheap to update the 3 pairs of glasses I use--readers and progressives for sunglasses and indoor glasses--all the time.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:12 PM

23. Get a supplemental plan. UHC has one. Get Plan G.

You will not have any co-pays. My premiums are $120 a month. My annual deductible is $183.

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Response to llmart (Reply #23)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:28 PM

57. Thanks to you & others I will

Make the switch. 🤞

Thank you 🙏

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #57)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:34 PM

59. You are very welcome.

You know, Americans think nothing of spending over $500 on an I-phone but then complain about paying insurance premiums for excellent, peace of mind coverage. When you're our age, good health insurance really equals peace of mind.

Also, I have read and heard so much misinformation regarding Medicare, even from posters on DU. I hear people confuse the terms Medicaid and Medicare all the time. One time I was at a neighborhood condo meeting (I live in a mostly senior community) and my goofy, uneducated neighbor (who is also a Trumpster) was saying with such authority something about Medicare that I knew to be completely untrue. I could see some of the women taking it all in like it was the truth just because this person said it with such authority. I know this woman and she more than likely didn't even graduate from high school, so why anyone would listen to her is beyond me.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #57)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:33 PM

99. Go to Medicare.gov first. If you have issues call Medicare.

My brother started there and has not looked back after several years. Sounds like you have a really poorly rated Plan B provider that Medicare may be cutting loose soon. I think a provider can offer via Medicare only so many years if they don't improve their rating.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:27 PM

26. Warren is brilliant!

She has a comprehensive grasp of financial issues faced by the majority of Americans and how they inform our politics.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:32 PM

28. THIS - I am the Mother in Elizabeth Warren's iconic family!

She touched on but did not go into how Republican enarmored corporations consolidated in mergers, acqusitions, reorganization of their product manufacturing and preparation to foreign countries, and killed unions - so many "institutions" of work that failed the American middle class. She did not mention how the moderate bipartisan senator worked with big banks so college students and their parents would never escape the loans the government guaranteed without recognizing what could happen to disrupt families earnings and savings. She explained the struggles of our lives.

Now we have a grandchild, and I worry for the very fabric of our democracy.

THINK OF WHAT HISTORY WILL SAY OF THAT RepubliCon PARTY AS ROLE MODELS; think how their obstruction, collusion, and abuse of power and falsehoods have weakened our families' abilities to access and pay for health, legal, and educational services that many but not all generations still alive or yet to be born will be able to afford and thrive without a middle class -- and one that still maintains a sense of respect for our climate, our countrymen, our veterans, and politics that don't just play toward the 1%'s greed at the top and politics of hate and divisive incitement.



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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:41 PM

31. Does your county/city have a Dept. of Aging Services, or

some such? Where I live in Western New York, we have several agencies that support seniors, supplying services, case management, and educational offerings. One, called Lifespan, offers several seminars on Medicare, presented by people supposedly not affiliated with any particular health insurance plan. I signed up for one next week. Maybe see if your county/city offers something similar?

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Response to Habibi (Reply #31)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:12 PM

50. the state certainly should

That is a good suggestion.

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Response to Habibi (Reply #31)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:14 PM

51. Great suggestion

I found a phone number will call tomorrow. That never dawned on me. (Plays Memory game again 😂

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 07:44 PM

33. I love Medicare.

Needed a CT urogram. Cost $8000. My copay on my pre-Medicare insurance was $2300, so I waited til I went on Medicare, where it cost me $215. Same insurance, BTW (Kaiser Permanente).

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:00 PM

39. It works for me,

with my 'supplemental' being Retired Federal Employee plan.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:02 PM

40. Not as much as not having Medicare.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:05 PM

43. Quit your bitchin'.

Al least you have health insurance. Many don't and many more may not.

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Response to democratisphere (Reply #43)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:45 PM

66. Quit your own bitchin

We paid for this out of every lifetime paycheck, and we still pay for it every month and every time we use it. We have the right to bitch. Just look at the amount of confusion on it in this thread. It sucks.

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Response to Triloon (Reply #66)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:49 PM

70. Wait till they add Medicare Part F, G, H, I, J...........X, Y and Z.

Bitchin' ain't the word for it!

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:18 PM

53. It not free either like most Americans think

$130 from SS for parts A & B
Supplement G costs $120 (plus it goes up 2-5% each year)
Part D runs anywhere from $15 to $80


So around $300 a month, Plus Medicare does not have family rates so a family of 4 would pay $1200 a month

ACA (with subsidies) would be cheaper for most 4 member families



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Response to krawhitham (Reply #53)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:43 PM

64. Not sure it would work that way

Insurance costs for people over 65 is generally much higher than younger people. On the other hand, people under Medicare after retiring have pre paid into it for 40 years or more

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:20 PM

54. In NM, I have Medicare thru Presbyterian Hospital - Presbyterian Senior Care

I try not to take drugs so I've never added the drug part and I do not have any supplemental . I was bitten by a rattlesnake, flown by helicopter 90 miles to Albuquerque, spent one night in the hospital and received $80,000 of antivenom and my bill was around $100.00.

When I had surgery for shredding my shoulder after falling down a flight of stairs, it did cost me around $400.00 but I figured that was probably cheaper than paying supplemental for a yr.

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Response to womanofthehills (Reply #54)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 10:36 PM

84. You actually have a Medicare Advantage Plan that combines the same coverage

Medicare provides with some aspects of a supplemental policy and, possibly, some drug coverage.

About 30% of Medicare beneficiaries choose these plans. I think they are a good deal, especially if you are OK using the planís network of physicians, hospitals, and other providers.

I think the hospital plans and organizations like Kaiser do a good job of coordinating care, which is one real weakness of traditional Medicare.

Rattlesnake bites are quite serious and your story shows just how well your plan responds to a serious emergency. Not all plans are as good.

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Response to womanofthehills (Reply #54)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:41 PM

100. How did you get bitten by a rattlesnake? On your leg?

I live in Florida. One thing I was taught as a child was to look before stepping and look around any large object that I am about to pick up, and push over things from a distance that I can't see under. A rattlesnake bite is one of the most expensive accidents that a person can have short of a bad carwreck, and it leaves permanent tissue damage on those that survive.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 08:38 PM

61. One of my best friends went without medical insurance for 10 years, and was overjoyed when...

...she became eligible for Medicare. She still struggles with various costs and navigating open enrollment choices -- but give it up? Never.

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Response to Hekate (Reply #61)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:46 PM

101. My brother did it. Send her to Medicare.gov, have her choose a top rated Plan B.

Some posters pointed that open enrollment is in progress now. She may be able to switch plan providers and save a ton of money. All plan are not equal, I don't know how Medicare eventually resolves that with each plan, but it's rating system seems sound.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 09:48 PM

80. this shit is deliberately convoluted to make it easy to fleece people

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Response to Hermit-The-Prog (Reply #80)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:49 PM

102. Wrong. My brother signed up. People need to go to Medicare.gov and do research.

The site was excellent for him, and he even had to call Medicare once, because it turned out the site didn't work on his smartphone. He has had zero issues since and has a excellent Plan B provider and Doctor that the provider hooked him up with.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #102)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 08:13 PM

108. not wrong. the complexity is deliberate to favor commercial interests.

Nothing about health care in this country is as simple as it should be.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 10:33 PM

83. Everu area in usa is different.

I an in Western ny.
We gave two very good( if any ins can be called very good)NOT FOR PROFIT ins companies tgat offer advant plans-- Excelles blue cross blue shield and MVP. Both gave 5-6 plans to choose from. Lowest premiums are ZERO 5his year. Next step up are $ 39 and $ 25 respectively. Each year i cgeck bith 9f them esp for diagnostics such as MRI, CT SCANS etc. Which around here can run $5000 to $ 10,000. My copay with MVP, to which i will switch in 2020, is $150. Office visit $15, specialist i think $40. Ambulance $200. Er.. i forget... low. Worldwide coverage for ambulance and er etc, same as in network here. Virtually EVERY doc and facility around here are in network

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Response to pangaia (Reply #83)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:51 PM

103. My brother lives here in Florida. His Plan B is from a Kentucky company. It has been excellent for

him.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2019, 10:53 PM

88. We need medical assistance,

Not medicare, or just get universal healthcare and fuck them insurance middlemen. We don't need insurance companies we need insurance for everyone. Medical assistance is way better than medicare.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 12:04 AM

89. I love Medicare!

As a person with several pre-existing conditions I would not be able to get any health care at all if not for Medicare. I have a supplemental Plan G and have never had any problems. I'm just thankful that I able to have health insurance after years of not having the medical care I badly needed. Just steer clear of the Medicare Advantage plans/scams and you'll be fine.

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Response to nancy1942 (Reply #89)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 01:35 AM

90. Thank you. I've learned this lesson UHC Advantage awful

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Response to OhNo-Really (Reply #90)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:57 PM

105. What you should do is go the Medicare.gov and find a top rated Plan B provider.

You may discover that what you need beyond that is minor. But if you do want something beyond, the top rated Plan B companies also offer the extra (as my brother found out). He also came to find out that the company was as good on the supplement as it was for it's Plan B.

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Response to nancy1942 (Reply #89)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 07:30 AM

92. I agree.

Don't be pennywise and pound foolish. Advantage plans may have very low premiums, but be aware that if you need anything outside of basic care, you will pay dearly in deductibles and copays. That's why the plans are more inexpensive than supplements.

Personally, I'd rather make sure that if I ever need expensive care, it will be covered. The last thing you need when you have medical issues is to worry about bills.

I am still a very healthy individual, but I keep in the back of my mind that I could be broadsided by a drunk driver or some other accident that would require extensive medical care. Just being healthy isn't the only thing to consider.

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Response to llmart (Reply #92)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 08:05 PM

106. Yep, health insurance is rather easy to figure out.

A person can buy a cheap policy, but they better not need it. Or they can pay more upfront and sleep at night after needing to use the policy. I think that Medicare affiliated plan pan out similarly.

A lot of people have likely regretted the crap plans that Trump and republicans allowed them to sign up to when the ACA was changed by them.

One day maybe we will get to universal health insurance coverage, but if history in this country is any marker, that is going to be a fight and we have to be mindful of not setting ourselves back in that fight by letting republicans take control of government ever again.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 01:11 PM

96. Teamsters

Union strong.

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Response to OhNo-Really (Original post)

Mon Nov 11, 2019, 10:51 PM

110. No one plan is right for everyone.

However, Advantage Plans ALL include regular Medicare. Many of them have no additional costs. The ones that do, give you benefits you otherwise wouldn't get. A friend of mine has an Advantage Plan that costs her an additional $65 dollars a month, but it allows her to seek out-of-network providers.

You really do have to do you homework. It's especially difficult when you first qualify for Medicare, because the vast majority of us are used to having whatever health insurance offered by our employer with almost no choices. People who already work for the federal government have spent their entire working life being able to select a different health plan each year, and are probably good at evaluating them. The rest of us, not so much.

But you have to do your homework.

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