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Patricia Carrera

Nearly half of Americans believe their health insurance would cover them if they got sick or hurt on international vacation — but it’s not that simple

Although 47% of Americans believe their health insurance policy will cover them if they get sick or hurt while traveling abroad, the answer is more complex. In reality, travel insurance or extra funds may be needed to fill in gaps left by primary insurers, and some travelers (such as those with government-sponsored plans) may need to completely supplant their insurance while abroad. 

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Will You Be Ready For Long Term Care?

For some, retirement means “where will we play today’s round of golf?” For others, it could mean, “do I pay for my meds or my rent?” In either case, a few concerns touch every retiree. The topic of long-term care is one of them, at least subconsciously. The question that causes more than a few sleepless nights is, “What happens when I can’t take care of myself anymore?”

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How does Medicare work with my job-based health insurance when I stop working?

Once you stop working, Medicare will pay first and any retiree coverage or supplemental coverage that works with Medicare will pay second.

You may be able to get COBRA coverage to continue your health insurance through the employer’s plan (usually up to 18 months).

Don’t wait until your COBRA coverage ends to sign up for Part B — Getting COBRA doesn’t extend your limited time to sign up for Medicare.

If you get COBRA: Before you sign up for Medicare – Your COBRA coverage will probably end when you sign up for Medicare. (If you get Medicare because you have End-Stage Renal Disease and your COBRA coverage continues, it will pay first.)

If you get COBRA: After you sign up for Medicare – COBRA pays after Medicare (unless you have End-Stage Renal Disease).

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Why should I stop contributions before I retire?

To avoid a tax penalty, you and your employer should stop contributing to your Health Savings Account (HSA) 6 months before you retire or apply for benefits from Social Security (or the Railroad Retirement Board).

If you’re 65 or older, your Part A coverage will start up to 6 months back from the date you sign up for Medicare or apply for benefits from Social Security or the Railroad Retirement Board. You’re not eligible to make contributions to your HSA after you have Medicare. If your Medicare Part A coverage overlaps when you or your employer made contributions, you’ll have to pay a tax penalty. 

You can withdraw money from your Health Savings Account after you sign up for Medicare to help pay your share of costs (like deductibles, premiums, coinsurance or copayments). 

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Medicare Open Enrollment Information

Call us today and compare your choices! This is the time to review your Medicare Advantage or stand alone prescription coverage choices.

  1. Think about your Medicare coverage needs for 2022. Carefully review your current Medicare coverage, and note any upcoming changes to your costs or benefits. Decide if your current Medicare coverage will meet your needs for the year ahead. If you like your current coverage, and it’s still available for 2022, you don’t need to take any action to keep it.
  2. Review your 2022 “Medicare & You” handbookIt has information about Medicare coverage and Medicare plans in your area. If you want to get your handbook electronically, you can go paperless by logging into (or creating) your secure Medicare account.

The Cost of Part B Medicare

Some people automatically get  Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance), and some people need to sign up for Part B. Learn how and when you can sign up for Part B.

If you don’t sign up for Part B when you’re first eligible, you may have to pay a late enrollment penalty.

Part B premiums

You pay a premium each month for Part B. Your Part B premium will be automatically deducted from your benefit payment if you get benefits from one of these:

  • Social Security
  • Railroad Retirement Board
  • Office of Personnel Management

If you don’t get these benefit payments, you’ll get a bill. 

Most people will pay the standard premium amount. If your modified adjusted gross income is above a certain amount, you may pay an Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA). Medicare uses the modified adjusted gross income reported on your IRS tax return from 2 years ago. This is the most recent tax return information provided to Social Security by the IRS. 

Depending on your 2019 Income will determine Part B premium

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Medicare Coverage for Home Health Aide Care

Medicare coverage can help older adults and people with disabilities obtain necessary home care. When individuals meet the home health benefit criteria, Medicare-covered care can include home health aide services. As defined by federal law, home health aides provide hands-on personal care, including assistance with the activities of daily living. This care is often critical to beneficiaries’ health, safety, and ability to remain at home. 

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