Basic Medicare question

My understanding:

If a 64-year-old individual is receiving social security, when he turns 65 he will be automatically enrolled in Medicare parts A and B with no action required on his part–no applications, paperwork, etc.

When his Medicare coverage begins, the Medicare premium payment will be automatically deducted from his monthly SS check.

Is the above correct?

My question:

Is this SS-recipient-Medicare-enrolled person then requiredto do anything additional? Is he required to purchase supplemental plans C,D, advantage plan, or whatever?

Or does this vary by state?

That person would have to buy a Medigap (also called a supplemental plan) or enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan (sometimes called MA or a managed care plan) if that person wants something other than Traditional Medicare (sometimes called fee for service Medicare).

You are not obligated to buy additional plans but you might want to consider it. Medicare is unlike plans you are used to. The deductible is quite small but you always pay 20% of any bill, so a $100,000 surgery - you owe $20,000. There is no out-of-pocket maximum.

Advantage plans can be quite cheap - they are like PPO or HMO plans where the insurance company wants you to stay in their network and get pre-approval at times. Most have co-pays and out-of-pocket maximums.

Supplement plans (Medigap) are available for a short time after getting Medicare, wait too long and they can deny coverage for pre-existing conditions. Coverage is with anyone who takes Medicare. They are more expensive but cover the 20%.

Here is a thread you might want to read.

What about people who don’t have SS payments? Is it deducted from other retirement plans?

My wife and I recently signed up for Medicare. We spent many hours researching the many different options. Medicare offers many ways for the unwary to shoot themselves in the foot. Do your own research to fully understand what you want to do and why. A first step is to download and/or order the “Medicare and Your 2017” booklet from the website. Unfortunately, this booklet is very confusing and leaves many important aspects out and contains a lot of irrelevant (for most people) information. But it is the official publication. The Consumer Reports website has some good info. Do a lot of Googling but beware of sites that want contact information so someone can call and sell you stuff before you’ve done your research.

Only if you get Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) payments or have a Civil Service annuity. Otherwise, you get a bill.

It’s extremely confusing. I recommend two resources:

Medicare Interactive has a lot of information that can go very in-depth, though it is not personalizable.

And each state has a SHIP (State Health Insurance Assistance Program) that will provider personalized, one-on-one unbiased counseling. Find your SHIP.

OP. You have to apply for Medicare:

Note Medicare A is free but Medicare B has a monthly premium. So if you continuing to work after you reach 65 you probably wouldn’t sign up for Medicare B as you have health insurance through your job.

Correct, although depending on the insurance offered by one’s employer one may be better off switching to Medicare. Some large companies offer Medicare Advantage or Medicare Supplemental group plans to retirees and Medicare eligible current employees/dependents as a way of encouraging them to leave the pool for the commercial plan offered to employees.

If you receive SS benefits already, as in the OP, you do not need to apply:

First, my wife and I cannot afford the Medigap plans, and they don’t come cheap.

Secondly, we’re encouraging all our friends to educate themselves as to any changes which might occur due to the “fluid” situation in the White House. Pay attention to ALL of it, their health care plan AND Medicare/Medicaid.

I am also watching my VA Health Benefits. Many of us Vets worry about changes which may affect us derogatorily.