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MedicarePuzzled About Medicare?

A little puzzled on what Medicare is and what kind of insurance is RIGHT for you? With so many companies and so many plans, you might not be able to connect all the pieces easily. This is why AZInsurance 4U sits down with you and provides options about the RIGHT plan for YOU based on your lifestyle, health, finances. AZInsurance 4U makes Medicare insurance benefits easy for to understand.

Choose an Advisor that you can count on, and we will show you a Medicare plan that meets your goals and needs. With the RIGHT plan for YOU, you really can get more from your Medicare benefits.

As a special help for 2019, this PDF will give some information about Medicare and You! Click to open and read, or save it to your computer for reference later.

Important Decisions Regarding Medicare

Annual Enrollment Period

October 15
December 7

Everyone turning 65 needs to make a decision regarding how they want to receive their Medicare benefits.

Everyone 65 and older - and already on Medicare - should review their options yearly. Make sure you are getting all the value and all the coverage you deserve from your health care coverage.

Call now and give your Medicare plan its annual checkup -- compare your plan today and review your options.

Frequently Asked Questions About Medicare

Here are frequently asked questions about Medicare and our expert answers for you.

What is Medicare?

Medicare is health insurance for the following:

  • People 65 or older
  • People under 65 with certain disabilities
  • People of any age with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) (permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or a kidney transplant)

The different parts of Medicare help cover specific services:

  • Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance)
    • Helps cover inpatient care in hospitals
    • Helps cover skilled nursing facility, hospice, and home health care.

  • Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance)
    • Helps cover doctors’ services, hospital outpatient care, and home health care
    • Helps cover some preventive services to help maintain your health and to keep certain illnesses from getting worse

  • Medicare Part D (Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage)
    • A prescription drug option run by Medicare-approved private insurance companies
    • Helps cover the cost of prescription drugs
    • May help lower your prescription drug costs and help protect against higher costs in the future

Medicare does not cover everything. If you need certain services that Medicare does not cover, you will have to pay for them yourself unless you have other insurance to cover the costs.

Some of the items and services that Medicare does not cover include the following:

  • Long-term care
  • Routine dental care
  • Dentures
  • Cosmetic surgery
  • Acupuncture
  • Hearing aids
  • Exams for fitting hearing aids

Who Is Eligible for Medicare?

By virtue of working and paying into the Medicare system for a minimum of 40 quarters (10 years), you are eligible for Medicare if you are 65 years old.

You may be eligible if you are under age 65 if you qualify on the basis of disability or some other special situation. You must be a U.S. citizen or a legal resident who has lived in the U.S. for at least five consecutive years.

Medicare is based on you, as an individual. If your spouse is 65, but you are not, you are not eligible for Medicare and must find other health coverage until you are 65 years old.

Where Do I Sign Up for Medicare?

Your enrollment for Medicare starts at the Social Security Administration Office or the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB). They handle most of the paperwork for Medicare enrollment.

If you are NOT getting Social Security or RRB benefits (for instance, because you’re still working) and you want Part A or Part B, you will need to sign up (even if you’re eligible to get Part A premium free).

In most cases, if you are already getting benefits from Social Security or the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB), you will automatically get Part A and Part B starting the first day of the month you turn 65. If your birthday is on the first day of the month, Part A and Part B will start the first day of the prior month.

If you are under 65 and disabled, you automatically get Part A and Part B after you get disability benefits from Social Security or certain disability benefits from the RRB for 24 months.

Social Security Card SampleYou will get your red, white, and blue Medicare card in the mail 3 months before your 65th birthday or your 25th month of disability. If you don’t want Part B, follow the instructions that come with the card, and send the card back. If you keep the card, you keep Part B and will pay Part B premiums.

How Do I Sign Up For Medicare

You can sign up when you are first eligible for Part B. (For example, if you are eligible for Part B when you turn 65, for Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plans, initial enrollment period is a 7-month period that begins 3 months before the month you turn 65, includes the month you turn 65, and ends 3 months after the month you turn 65.)

Sign up early to avoid a delay in getting coverage for Part B services. To get Part B coverage the month you turn 65, you must sign up during the first three months before the month you turn 65.

If you wait until the last four months of your Initial Enrollment Period to sign up for Part B, your start date for coverage will be delayed.

Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) has a different enrollment period. You have a 6-month Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) policy open enrollment period which starts the first month you are 65 and enrolled in Part B. This period gives you a guaranteed right to buy any Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) policy sold in your state. Once this period starts, it cannot be delayed or replaced.

To sign up for a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan, you must have Medicare Part A
Part B. To join a Medicare Advantage Plan (which includes a Prescription Drug Plan), you must have Part A AND Part B. You must also live in the service area of the Medicare drug plan you want to join.

What If I Do NOT Sign Up for Medicare?

If you are not eligible for premium-free Part A, and you do not buy it when your are first eligible, your monthly premium may go up 10%. You will have to pay the higher premium for twice the number of years you could/should have had Part A, but did not sign-up.

If you do not sign up for Part B when your are first eligible, you may have to pay a late enrollment penalty for as long as you have Medicare. Your monthly premium for Part B may go up 10% for each full 12-month period that you could/should have had Part B, but did not sign up for it. Usually, you do not pay a late enrollment penalty if you meet certain conditions that allow you to sign up for Part B during a special enrollment period.

What If I'm Still Working?

Medicare hospital insurance (Part A) is free for almost everyone, but you do pay a monthly premium for medical insurance (Part B).

If you already have other health insurance when you become eligible for Medicare, is it worth the monthly premium cost to sign up for Medicare medical insurance?

The answer varies with each person and the kind of other health insurance you may have. Although we cannot give you "yes" or "no" answers, we can provide options that may be helpful when you make your decision.

What If I Have a Private Insurance Plan?

Get in touch with AZInsurance 4U to see how your private plan fits with Medicare medical insurance. This is especially important if you have family members who are covered under the same policy. And remember, just as Medicare does not cover all health services, most private plans do not either. In planning your health insurance coverage, keep in mind that most nursing home care is not covered by Medicare or private health insurance policies. See Long Term Care Insurance for more information.

For your own protection, do not cancel any health insurance
          you now have until your Medicare coverage actually begins.

What If I Have Insurance From an Employer-Provided Group Health Plan?

Group health plans of employers with 20 or more employees are required by law to offer workers and their spouses who are age 65 (or older) the same health benefits that are provided to younger employees.

If you are currently covered under an employer provided group health plan, you should talk to your personnel or human resources office and call AZInsurance 4U before you sign up for Medicare medical insurance.

What If I Have Health Care Protection from Other Plans?

If you have coverage under a program from the Department of Defense, your health benefits may change or end when you become eligible for Medicare. You should contact the Department of Defense or a military health benefits advisor for information before you decide whether to enroll in Medicare medical insurance.

If you have health care protection from the Indian Health Service, Department of Veterans Affairs or a state medical assistance program, contact the people in those offices to help you decide whether it is to your advantage to have Medicare medical insurance.

Why Should I (or Might I) Change Medicare Plans?

Life can change; and so your Medicare coverage might need a tune up. The right choice two years ago or even last year may not be the best choice for you today. Why consider changing plans? Here are some reasons:

  • Your health conditions have changed.
  • Your prescription drugs have changed.
  • Your premiums have gone up.
  • Your out-of-pocket expenses are higher than you thought they would be.
  • There is a new plan available in your area that seems to offer a better price for the same or similar benefits.
  • You moved.
  • You lost employer retiree health benefits.

The government sets specific rules about when you can change plans for Medicare Advantage and Part D Prescription Drugs.

Make sure you understand how your cost, coverage and choice might change with a new plan. It can be confusing since it is not something you frequently buy. So, ask AZInsurance 4U, as professionals who specializes in Medicare plans.

When Can I Change Plans?

Here are the dates you can change plans.

If you are switching from... Dates you can change plans...

Medicare Supplement (Medigap) to Medicare Supplement (Medigap)

You can add or drop a Medicare Supplement (Medigap) plan at any time.

Ask about how existing health conditions are handled in the new plan.

Medicare Supplement (Medigap) to Medicare Advantage Oct 15 - Dec 7 is the Annual Enrollment Period.

Medicare Advantage to Medicare Advantage*

Oct 15 - Dec 7 is the Annual Enrollment Period.

* One plan change permitted per year.

Medicare Advantage to Original Medicare

Jan 1 - Mar 31 is the Medicare Open Enrollment Period.

Part D Prescription Drug Coverage
  • Oct 15 - Dec 7 is the Annual Enrollment Period.

  • Jan 1 - Feb 14 is the Medicare Annual Disenrollment Period. (If you currently have a prescription drug plan)

This is the only time of the year you can change your Part D plan.

How Do I Apply For or Change Plans?

  1. Call AZInsurance 4U TODAY!!! An advisor will ask you questions about your current plan, your concerns and what are your needs. Options for different plans will be recommended to you that best fits your lifestyle, health, finances and you choose what will be the RIGHT plan for YOU.

  2. AZInsurance 4U will provide you with a quote(s), information about the plan benefits and an application.

  3. You can schedule an appointment or simply fill out the application and send it back. AZInsurance 4U will handle it from there including sending your application into the company, handling any follow-up questions and servicing your plan for life.

  4. AZInsurance 4U can help you in the future if your needs change and you want to switch plans again. (There are exceptions - For example, if you move out of area or your plan is not available).

Medicare Quick Start Guides

  • For our Quick Start Guide if you're ALREADY receiving Social Security - CLICK HERE
  • For our Quick Start Guide if you're NOT RECEVING Social Security - CLICK HERE

Other Medicare Resources

We have additional Medicare resources located on our Resources page.

Do Your Have Information about Other Insurances (Medicare Advantage, Prescription Plans, etc.?)

Yes, we have information about all different types of insurance plans. Use the navigation links at the bottom of this page or the navigation menu at the top of this page.

How Can AZInsurance 4U Help When Medicare Time Rolls Around?

  • MEDICARE Specialists - 30 years serving Medicare beneficiaries
  • EDUCATE - and discuss all of your Medicare options, then simplify your choices.
  • DECISIONS - Smart and Wise decisions made simple and easy for you.
  • INTEGRITY - Trust, Honesty, Confidence, Professional
  • COMPANIES- We work with "top-rated, major companies, and many plans". "YOU" choose the RIGHT plan for YOU.
  • APPLY - When and how should you apply for Part B & D to avoid penalties?
  • RESPONSIBLE - Service and satisfaction - all questions answered only a phone call away.
  • ELIMINATE - Worry & stress by understanding your options up front.

  • THOROUGH - No question left unanswered, no options left unaccounted for.
  • INSURANCE 4U - understands your health coverage choice is most important to you.
  • MANY, MANY Choices - to provide the RIGHT Medicare benefits for YOU.
  • EVALUATE - your Medicare needs annually each October. We would like to be the professionals you can count on each year to determine your needs.

Contact AZInsurance 4U For More Information

Learn what Medicare can do for YOU!!! Stay informed at all times by calling AZInsurance 4U.

Need help taking the next step? Call Nancy Foxen for guidance.

For your free consultation, click here for a contact form, give us a call or send an email.

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