Updated: Jul 31
Just a few years ago, a retirement institute conducted a poll of older Americans, and they found that 72% of the people receiving Medicare benefits actually wished they understood the plan better. Further study reveled several Medicare misconceptions. Here are three of the most commonly believed Medicare myths, and the truth behind them.
Myth #1. Medicare Is Free To Everyone Over 65
Medicare is divided into parts. Part A is hospital coverage and it may be at no cost monthly but you will still have a deductible and copayments. Medicare Part B, which covers doctor visits among other things, actually has a monthly premium that is automatically deducted from your social security check. Due to this auto-deduction, many people forget they are even being charged. Medicare parts C and D which include additional coverage often have premiums, deductibles, and copayments.
Myth #2. You Can Enroll In Medicare Any Time
This used to be true but now we must follow enrollment deadlines unless you meet certain conditions. Each year there is an "annual open enrollment period" when you can make changes to Medicare. Your initial enrollment period, when you turn 65, is a 7 month window. Ask me for details on when you can enroll or make changes to your Medicare plans.
Myth #3. Medicare Covers Everything
Traditional Medicare covers hospital stays, doctor's visits, and several other things but certainly not "everything." Most notably not covered by traditional medicare are prescription drugs, dental, vision, hearing, and fitness. Often you can get these additional benefits with a Medicare Supplement or Medicare Advantage plan. Give me a call to hear all your supplement and advantage plan options.