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Thread: Medicare and options any opinions ?

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    Medicare and options any opinions ?

    Seems we have many seniors on here myself included and I will be having to make my Medicare decisions in the near future
    I have searched around a little for a forum that discusses Medicare options and have not really found any good ones I liked so thought I would ask on here since we all have some things in common here, if this is not the place let me know and I will delete.
    Anybody wish to share thoughts on supplements and advantage plans, I know everyone's situation is different but I was hoping to maybe learn from first hand experience
    Thanks

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    My recommendation is to get the best medicare supplement plan you can get. At one time, it was Plan F, but I think they aren't allowing new enrollments. Not sure of the cut off date so second best is Plan G.

    I actually dropped my retirement insurance coverage thru my employer to get a supplement plan as they had an advantage plan and I still would have had to pay the entire premium anyway if I stayed with employer coverage. Just make sure to sign up in the guaranteed acceptance window, and you won't need any underwriting. I think it is a 6 month time window.

    Bad thing about advantage plans is you always have a copay. Heck, if you go to the doctor you might have to write a check for the doctor, the lab, the x-ray dept, and the radiologist. If you like wasting time writing and mailing checks then an advantage plan is for you.

    By the way, a few years ago there was some good conversation on this over at BJ21 on the paid section. I think someone by the handle of "Snapper" provided some really good info. I think he also got post of the month for it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Midwest Player View Post
    My recommendation is to get the best medicare supplement plan you can get.
    Unless you are in poor health, I don't agree. Insurance is -EV. The more of the cost you can assume yourself, the lower your premiums will be.

    Quote Originally Posted by Midwest Player View Post
    Bad thing about advantage plans is you always have a copay.
    What's wrong with that? Do you pay your plumber, roof shoveler, car mechanic, etc? If so, why are you so averse to having to pay a small copay for medical-related expenses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Midwest Player View Post
    If you like wasting time writing and mailing checks then an advantage plan is for you.
    For the last 20+ years, I've been using electronic bill pay. I type the check online, the date I want it issued, and I'm done. The only checks I write and mail are those to the IRS and state tax authority.

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    Random number herder Norm's Avatar
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    I was on Plan N, which was OK. I had an MRI and Cat-Scan that cost almost nothing. I just switched to Aetna advantage PPO. $0 premium. Haven't had time to evaluate it yet -- but drug prices thus far are really cheap. My doc says Medicare is one of the best bargains in life.
    "It is impossible to begin to learn that which one thinks one already knows." -Epictetus

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    Quote Originally Posted by Norm View Post
    I was on Plan N, which was OK. I had an MRI and Cat-Scan that cost almost nothing. I just switched to Aetna advantage PPO. $0 premium. Haven't had time to evaluate it yet -- but drug prices thus far are really cheap. My doc says Medicare is one of the best bargains in life.
    It would have been free if you had Plan F.

    Where I'm really getting screwed is on my prescription drug plan. I have it with Blue Cross Blue Shield of MI and it is the most expensive part D plan in MI. I pay over $105 a month and with wife that is over $210 a month. I was tempted to go with someone else this year, but didn't want the hassle of switching plans. However, I'm very happy with my medicare supplement plan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Norm View Post
    My doc says Medicare is one of the best bargains in life.
    Norm, your doctor is correct, but only for his/her patients not for the doctors themselves. After a doctor submits a bill to Medicare a huge percentage of that bill is immediately written off and the doctors end up with crumbs. That is why it is getting harder, and harder to find a good practicing doctor today, as they would rather find other areas of medicine to earn their living.

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    Random number herder Norm's Avatar
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    The same is true from any insurance.
    "It is impossible to begin to learn that which one thinks one already knows." -Epictetus

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    Senior Member drunk's Avatar
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    ...........................


    I agree with 21forme................unless you are a person who requires a great deal of medical care............................I was influenced by the linked article which recommends against advantage plans



    the most important point in the article is re the 20% co-pay that scares a lot of people if you don't have supplemental insurance - that Medicare will greatly reduce the Provider's bill - he cannot charge Medicare what he would like to and that greatly impacts your co-pay in your favor:



    "Now, I want to be clear about what it means when I say Medicare covers 80 percent of approved charges. Let's say your doctor orders an MRI of your knee. The hospital where you get that MRI might bill Medicare $4,000. Medicare looks at that $4,000 bill and says "we think that MRI is really worth $580 and not a penny more!" That means that Medicare pays $464 for that MRI, you pay $116, and the remainder is completely disregarded. No health care provider who accepts Medicare is allowed to go after you for any more than what Medicare approves."


    the 2nd most important point focuses on what the supplemental policies will actually pay:


    "So now we can talk about Medicare supplemental insurance policies. What do they really cover? How much do they cost? And are they worth it?We'll start with what they cover. Supplemental insurance is sold to cover "what Medicare doesn't." Remember I said that wasn't quite true. Unless a supplemental policy specifically states otherwise, the most it will cover are the Medicare deductibles ($147 outpatient and $1,187 hospitalization) and the 20 percent co-insurance. Supplemental policies do not usually cover any medical services Medicare won't cover. What's more, Medicare supplemental insurance will only pay health care providers what you would pay if you didn't have the supplemental policy. Providers aren't paid any more for taking care of you if you have one of these policies."


    these 2 points clinched it for me and I did not purchase any supplemental insurance - again, if you need a great deal of medical care they may be worthwhile


    https://www.huffpost.com/entry/medic...cies_b_3901861











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    Random number herder Norm's Avatar
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    Of course if you don't have any insurance, including Medicare, you pay $4,000 for that MRI. I paid $20. For drugs, without any insurance, I would pay $579.85 for 90 days of Lipitor. With insurance $5.23.
    "It is impossible to begin to learn that which one thinks one already knows." -Epictetus

  10. #10


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    Quote Originally Posted by Norm View Post
    if you don't have any insurance, including Medicare, you pay $4,000 for that MRI
    Not exactly. They BILL $4000 which doesn't mean they will get paid $4000. Most health care facilities are willing to make a "cash deal," if you ask them. This doesn't mean I suggest going WITHOUT insurance - I don't.

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