Although as we get older we find ourselves facing more health problems than we did as youngsters, we also often find that we lose our health insurance coverage as it was provided by our employers and so having retired, we have none.
That would be the case at least if it were not for Medicare . This can be seen really as a health insurance paid for by the US government for retired people, replacing their employer’s group insurance which no longer covers them. To qualify for this government insurance you must be retired, be over the age of 65 and have worked for a minimum of 10 years.
Like all insurance policies, some things are covered and others are not and supposedly to make it easier to know what is and what is not covered, Medicare is divided into 4 parts. Part A deals with hospital stays and part B deals with out-patient and doctors’ visits.
Part C is a private medical insurance that can be taken out and as long as you forfeit your rights to Parts A and B, Medicare will pay part of the insurance cost. Part D covers the rising costs of prescription drugs and although it may not pay the cost of the drugs, it does offer some large discounts, making them more affordable.
Although there are 4 parts, it is only Part A which is free and the others have to be paid for but are optional as to whether or not you take advantage of them. As we mentioned, not just one insurance policy covers every eventuality and so as well as these parts, there are many different Medicare supplements available. Often referred to as Medigaps as they cover the gaps in the different parts, these supplements can ensure that any extra aspects not already covered, are covered, all be it at an additional cost.
Although many people see any type of insurance as being expensive, this is one that although it may be expensive, is one that we will certainly need at some time as we get older. We would therefore all like to have as much and the best coverage as we can get but unfortunately, that is often beyond out financial grasp however, we can still get as much as we can afford and so to that end, we should study all 4 parts plus any supplements and decide exactly what we can afford and which will be the most useful to have as we get older
Although regardless of what parts of Medicare we have or even if we have private insurance, it is unlikely that all the costs of our health care will be paid for as we will generally have to pay something towards the costs but, by taking advantage of the best parts for us and the best supplements for us, we can at least make the parts we have to pay for affordable and not beyond our financial grasp.