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Do we have to get supplemental insurance? Husband is 68 (cov. by Medicare) and I am 64 (covered by his retirement insurance). We don't have vision or dental at this point and pay cash for services.

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What she has is a Medicare Advantage Plan, not Medigap. I had never heard of Medigap and have been told that I am better with a Medicare Advantage Plan as well. Someone is coming to talk to me this friday, and discuss my options. It sounds to me that your parents were being ripped off. I've never heard of someone paying that much. Unless this is not Medicare insurance.
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It is true if you do not go with part D you will pay a pently but I got my meds through AARP RX and paid about a dollar more for a time then it was reduced after a time. Many docs are not taking pts. with only medicare but love pts. with medicare and a supplement. You can get policies like Humari that take the money that you pay orignal medicare and cover a policy but very often theses companies leave an area of the county where medicial expenses are high-like the northeast-then you have to scramble to get a new insurance when you are sicker and older It does cost more to get a good supplement insurance but I find it is worth it in the long run.
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Your mom fortunately has a very generous insurance plan in place. My Dad was paying about $450 a month for supplemental insurance and now that he's passed, it will be about $280 a month for my mom. It is, however, worth it. My Dad was in and out of the hospital all year with various treatments for his cancer and he had access to topnotch doctors at the top hospital in the city during that time. We paid maybe $30 out of pocket for all of it. And for my mom, who has dementia and we recently moved into a memory-care residence, having the supplmental insurance was a requirement for her to move in there (unbeknowst to me beforehand). So I'm glad we opted to continue it after Dad died in September.
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I have no idea what everyone is talking about. My Mom has supplemental insurance thru Humana. She pays nothing! Likewise she does not pay for her prescriptions. This is all paid to Humana thru Medicare. I don't understand where everyone is saying this is expensive. We pay nothing other than the Medicare deduction every month from SS.
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You may need a supplemental health insurer (medigap). Most of the medical costs covered by Medicare are coveraged up to 80%, the medigap basically pays the remaining 20%. Some medigap policies cover, vision, dental and perhaps something for medicine. Shop around these plans aren't cheap and as you age insurers will not want to pick you and your husband up. It is easier to get medigap policies in your 60's vs your 80's.

I would suggest investigating long term care insurance policies too.
Elizabeth
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Ange02 is right. The fact that you are healthy now ... and therefore don't "need" Medicare B or D ... does not mean you won't need this "insurance" down the road when maybe you aren't so healthy anymore. But the government has set up the system so that if you DON'T sign up for Part B or D immediately when you become eligible, you'll get socked with a penalty when you eventually DO sign up for it. This suggests that relatively healthy people are, with their Part B and D premiums, helping to subsidize the government's costs for Part B and D payers who are not so healthy, and this is why the government uses penalties to try to force healthy people to "opt in" to paying these premiums well before they are likely to get value for the money they are paying.

Another thing I learned the hard way this year is that signing up for a Medadvantage program instead of a Medigap program can make it impossible later to get Medigap coverage ... so think carefully about the possible long-term consequences of doing this, too.

Medadvantage policies combine Part B and D into one policy, and they can be cheaper than pricing these separately. But what we found for my Dad is that there a breathtaking shortage of doctors in rural southern Oregon who are willing to accept new Medicare patients. Medadvantage policies constrict this number even further by including only a subset of regional doctors in their "network." This made getting access to doctors last year EXTREMELY hard for us, so I decided this year, I'd switch him back to "traditional" Medicare and get a Medigap policy and a part D policy instead, even though his monthly premium costs would go up. Turns out that only under very specific circumstances can you get a Medigap policy once you have elected to sign up for a Medadvantage policy ... if you choose to buy a Medigap policy right when you first become eligible for Medicare, the insurance companies are required to sell you the Medigap policy you choose, and not to deny you coverage due to pre-existing conditions. But unless you fall into one of the special circumstances I mentioned above, if you buy a Medadvantage policy first and try to switch later (i.e., during an annual "open enrollment period") to a Medigap policy, an insurance company can refuse to sell you Medigap coverage if you have a "pre-existing condition." My Dad has a diagnosed dementia now, which can be an expensive condition to treat ... so the odds that an insurance company would NOW be willing to sell him a Medigap policy are low.

Finding this out really upset me, because no one told us when we signed up for a Medadvantage policy that doing so could make it essentially impossible later to switch to a Medigap policy ... and the "access" to in-network doctors taking Medicare patients where my Dad lives are so bad. Worse, when we selected the Medadvantage policy he is on, we did so after first checking the plan's provider directory, and determining that there were some 30 available in-network "general providers" who, the plan claimed, where taking new Medicare patients. When we actually tried to schedule with these providers, though, we learned that a staggering number of them were not only NOT taking new Medicare patients, but had not done so for YEARS. So the "provider directory" turned out to have been a dangerous document to base our plan decision on.

Dad's primary care provider is now a family nurse practitioner, and apparently, a lot of elderly people on Medicare in the area where he lives have gone that route because there are so few MDs or DOs willing to see/treat them for the money Medicare pays. The whole thing is pretty scary, actually ... really makes me wonder how bad things will be by the time we get there ourselves. The new health care law will, on its face, improve coverage by making it possible for more people to qualify for coverage by insurance companies who won't be able to refuse to supply it based on previous conditions ... but as I have explained above, health care "coverage" does not equal health care "access." Doctors already do not and will not in the future have to take Medicare patients (and most cannot afford to take many) ... I imagine the same thing will apply to the sort of coverage the government is able to mandate that insurance companies provide. Medical tourism is a viable option only for those who are healthy or physicially non-frail enough to travel great distances. Scary ....
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I believe my dental insurance policy when I retire in a couple years will be called "dental tourism"!
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There are penalties for not subscribing to part B or D once you are eligble & on Medicare.
Down the road, should you need this it will be costly to join because of the penalties.
Something to consider carefully.
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Part A Medicare is for hospitalization only. Part B is Medicare for when your parents visit their physician at his clinic. Part D Medicare will pay for medication they have signed up for. If your parents have not signed up for Part D, their medication is not covered. Part B and D are nothing more than a supplemental insurance policy which are costly.. If their medication is not expensive or they take very little prescribed medications, they would need to weigh the benefits over the costs. My husband and I do not have Part B nor Part D due to the fact we are very healthy and take no medication. We take the money that would be spent on the supplemental insurance to take part in alternative therapies.SK
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My parents have Medicare A and B. Lately, the different pharmacies told me that their medicare doesn't cover medications. Yet, the medicare website said that it does cover. Fortunately the parents have a secondary private insurance.
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If you are on Medicare and have Part A and Part B, you DON'T have to get supplemental insurance, but it's a good idea. There are many offered...for instance I have a Humana supplemental that costs $71/mo. Not exactly cheap, but compared to what I would have to pay out of pocket without it, it is worth that. The policy I have also includes a dental and vision plan.
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Yes, you will need to get a separate insurance for Dental & Vision.
I , & most of my retired friends on Medicare do not have this insurance as it is expensive & also many that are on our Medicare supplement plans are dentists rhat are not in their network or that are a long distance to drive of which many of us no longer do.
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