Open Enrollment (AEP), is around the corner, and for 44 million beneficiaries who are enrolled (1), this becomes a time to take advantage to see what changes are coming up and possibly change plans. And roughly 3 million Americans (2) will be turning 65 every year and enroll for the first time.
Medicare for those first enrolling can be confusing and overwhelming; for most Americans, it is the first time they have had to take care of their health plan upon retiring and no longer receiving health care coverage from their employers. Even those who have been on Medicare for several years can be overwhelmed with all the changes and different options available.
A key part of making sure your retirement plan works is having the correct health plan for your situation. You need to consider the cost of the Part A premium and what is covers. What about Part B; what does it cover and what does it cost. Prescription drug coverage is another important consideration; not only the cost but does your plan cover all the medications you take?
Many secondary plans (those you can enroll in outside of Part A and B) have a lot of benefits that can help save you money on doctor visits, prescriptions, home health care costs and even gym memberships.
So how do you find out what is the best plan for you? You can spend hours on research and still not make the right choice simply because there is too much information.
What I tell my clients when we are discussing their retirement plan is that they need to speak to someone who is an expert on the topic. I don’t advise on Medicare health plans because it is a specialty and just like your doctor, each specialty has their in-depth knowledge. That is why you don’t go to a cardiologist when you have knee pain, that is why I refer my clients to my Medicare advisor expert when it comes time to this essential part of retirement planning.
A Medicare consultant knows what questions to ask you, and since they work day in and day out with the different plans, they can quickly help you determine what the best plan for you that will fit your lifestyle and your budget is.
(1) According to AARP
(2) Pew Research