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I go on Medicare on my birthday, I will be 63, I am a diabetic. Do I just go on medicare or my own ins., or both.

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You have been paying into Medicare all your working lifetime through those FICA funds taken out of your paycheck. You kinda need to apply for Medicare in the short window before your 65 bday as because if you don't there will be penalties to place you into eligibility later on. There is someone who recently posted on this site that their spouse did NOT sign up for Medicare and now needs health insurance and the make-up period penalty is over 5K to get him onto medicare. you want to avoid that from happening.

Once you sign up for Medicare you don't have to use it either. If you are still working and get insurance through your employer, you can just continue to use that policy and just hold the Medicare card till you finally finally retire and off employee coverage.

Most retiree folks get a secondary insurance to fill in the gaps (at least 20% of costs) of what Medicare does not cover. Just what Medigap is best or even available is by state and within that often by region. Some folks have it so that their old traditional insurance becomes their secondary (this was the case for my mom as she had high option federal BCBS & it worked perfect with Medicare as there was never ever a co-pay as all was covered either by Medicare or BCBS for doctors, hospital, RX's & ancillary services like PT/OT). Others need to enroll in a Medigap policy as their old insurance will defer from being a secondary.

When you are close to enrolling onto Medicare, you will be inundated with all sorts of Medigap policies. It's really up to you as a consumer to read up on what is provided and how coverage is done (free or has a premium) and if care is limited to a system or alliance of providers. Where I live one of the larger hospital systems (Ochsner) has their own very good Medigap policy but you are limited to only getting care & providers from within their system otherwise it's private pay at whatever that rate is.
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