3 Myths about Medicare

3 myths about Medicare

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The Medicare program has provided health coverage for older Americans since being signed into law in 1965 by President Lyndon B. Johnson. Millions of Americans rely on these plans to supply health benefits, but unfortunately, myths about Medicare have persisted ever since becoming law. To make the most of your Medicare benefits and prepare for health care in your retirement, you should learn the facts about Medicare and what benefits it provides.

Myth: Your Medicare is Free

Medicare is NOT free. There are premiums, deductibles, copays, and coinsurance associated with Medicare. For Part A, you may qualify for a premium-free benefit (due to having paid adequate Medicare taxes over your lifetime). However, you will still be subject to a deductible payment, copay, and coinsurance. Part B has a standard monthly premium that changes year over year. Some people may pay a higher monthly premium depending on their income. Individuals earning over a certain amount will pay slightly more for Part B. Medigap plans administered through private insurance companies have a monthly premium and vary in costs. Prescription drug plans have a monthly premium, and some prescription medications have a copay payment.

Myth: Medicare Covers Everything

Medicare does NOT cover everything. Many people use blanket terms when discussing Medicare, but this is not the case. Part A is hospital insurance and covers hospital stays and associated inpatient services in the hospital, skilled nursing facility care, hospice care, and inpatient care in a skilled nursing facility that is not custodial or longer-term care. Part B is medical insurance and covers doctor-office visits, outpatients visits, and the associated services, as well as medically necessary services and preventive services. Parts A and B will NOT cover things like:

  • Prescription Medications
  • Dental Benefits
  • Hearing Benefits
  • Vision Benefits
  • Long-Term Custodial Care

Myth: I will be automatically enrolled.

If you are still working, close to 65, you aren’t getting Social Security benefits or Railroad Retirement Board benefits, then you will need to sign up for Medicare. If you are eligible for a free premium Part A, you still will need to sign up. If you are working and not receiving Social Security benefits, you will not be mailed information on Medicare. You will need to call the Social Security department three months before turning 65 as best practice and to avoid any penalties. You can complete your enrollment online at socialsecurity.gov by calling Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 or visiting your local Social Security office in person.

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We hope that this information on 3 myths about Medicare is useful to you. We hope you learned something new! Read about misconceptions about life insurance here.

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About Jose Lerma

Jose has been a career agent working with Empower Brokerage since 2021 helping clients from all walks of life find tailored solutions for their healthcare needs. He is passionate about helping people fulfill their dreams and helping clients live a more empowered existence. 

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