Medicare Part B: The Big One

As people begin their Medicare insurance, many people look at all the information they are given and wonder when they are going to understand all of it. As the information continues to come, changes are made and confusion reigns. There are different parts to Medicare and just like anything else new, it takes time to learn exactly what Medicare will and won't do for its beneficiaries.

What is Medicare Part B?

Medicare Part B is the medical insurance coverage provided by Medicare. This is the insurance that will be billed when its recipients go to the doctor's offices for services, outpatient care, some medical equipment, home health care services as well as other medical needs. One of the most important services that Medicare Part B covers is preventative care.

When people begin Medicare, it is important that people make sure they have Medicare Part B. Not having this piece of insurance can be devastating and will result in many missed opportunities. When people have this insurance, they have the necessary insurance to go to the doctor and be seen for different illnesses, be monitored for a medical issue and prevent minor injuries and ailments from turning into something catastrophic. Those that don't have medical insurance are left with poor health and very few options for treatment. The bills that come from seeking treatment with no insurance are normally astronomical. Having Medicare Part B is a must have for everyone that is on Medicare.

How do I get it?

There are some people that automatically begin their Medicare Part B. As people turn 65, they will receive their Medicare cards in the mail and if they are entitled to Medicare Part A, the effective date will be listed on the card. For some Medicare recipients, their Part B effective date will be on there as well. If there is no effective date for Part B and they want the coverage, all Medicare recipients have to do is call the Social Security Administration to discuss what needs to be done to begin their coverage.

Medicare Part B is not something that is premium free. This is an insurance that has a premium that has to be paid monthly. The premium for Medicare Part B can vary and those that keep it should know that those premiums normally are automatically deducted from their Social Security benefits check or their Railroad Retirements check. It is not something that can be sent in separately, it is an automatic deduction.

Normally when people qualify for Medicare Part A, they can begin their Medicare Part B coverage as well. When those that are under 65 and disabled need to begin their Medicare Part B coverage, they have gone through the necessary procedures to begin their Medicare Part A coverage. As they receive their Medicare cards, they should see their Medicare Part B effective date on the card as well. If there is a time that there is no Medicare Part B effective date, they should call the Social Security Administration immediately to report it and make sure they qualify for the coverage.

When do I qualify for it?

As with most things involving Medicare, Medicare Part B starts for most people automatically when they turn 65 years old. If it doesn't start automatically, people become eligible when they are at that age. These benefits typically start on the first day of the month of their 65th birthday.

There are many people that are also eligible for Medicare Part B and aren't 65. Those that are eligible are normally granted the coverage because they have met the qualifications to get and receive Medicare Part A and may have a qualifying illness or disability.

I am 65 but I don't want it.

Just because people turn 65 doesn't mean they have to stop their coverage and turn directly into Medicare recipients. There are many people that are at that age, still working. Those that are still working and have insurance provided by their employer have the option of delaying their Medicare Part B coverage. The important thing for those that don't want the coverage to begin yet is to make sure that their employer plan will allow them to stay within the plan after their 65th birthday and to keep their coverage. As long as they have health insurance, a call to the Social Security Administration can help them delay their Medicare Part B effective date.

As people become eligible for Medicare benefits, they receive more and more pieces of information. This can be overwhelming because it almost turns into information overload. One of the best resources that's given to Medicare beneficiaries each year is a manual, Medicare and You. It has many different tips, guidelines and other pieces of information that will help those with questions. If at any time there is a question about Medicare, people should address those questions with a call to Medicare or the Social Security Administration. There is no question too small or that can't be addressed and insurance is too important to ignore.


May. 6 12'

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