| Wed, Aug 29, 2012 @ 09:00 AM

Working Past Age 65? What About Medicare?

Posted by Medicare Made Clear

working-beyond-65-medicareIf you plan to work past your 65th birthday, you may want to sign up for Original Medicare Part A when you become eligible. Most first become eligible for Medicare when they turn 65. Some are eligible earlier due to disability. However, if you have active employer group insurance, you may not need to enroll in Original Medicare Part B until you retire or otherwise lose your current coverage.

Keep in mind, Original Medicare doesn’t include prescription drug coverage, so it may be a good idea to enroll in a Medicare Part D plan if your employer group insurance plan doesn’t include prescription drug coverage.  A Part D plan comes with a monthly premium, but it could help pay for any prescription drugs that you may take.

To find out more about how Medicare works with your employer group plan, call the customer service number on the back of your insurance card.

Here’s some general information to help you better understand Original Medicare and how it works with most employer group insurance plans.

Original Medicare: How Does it Work?

If you’re eligible for Medicare and you have active employer group insurance, your employer group plan continues to be the primary payer for the benefits and services you receive.

For most, it makes sense to enroll only in Medicare Part A while employed with active employer group coverage, because most don’t pay a monthly premium for Part A. Medicare Part B does comes with a monthly premium (a minimum of $99.90 per month in 2012), so for most, it makes sense to wait to enroll in Part B until you retire or otherwise lose your employer group insurance coverage.

Some exceptions apply so it’s a good idea to check with your employer group plan representative before taking any action. Call the customer service number on the back of your employer group insurance card to find out more about how Medicare works with your current plan.

Original Medicare: What it Covers and What it Costs

Original Medicare has two parts: Part A (hospital stays) and Part B (doctor visits).

Part A helps pay for medically necessary services while confined to a hospital, skilled nursing facility, psychiatric hospital or hospice care. It also covers home health care and durable medical equipment supplied through home health care. For most, Part A does not come with a monthly premium, but it has coverage limits.

Part B helps pay for medically necessary services provided by a physician in a clinic, nursing home or doctor’s office, or in your home. It also covers related services such as medical supplies, outpatient hospital services, diagnostic X-rays, and other lab services. Certain ambulance services and durable medical items, as well as physical, occupational and speech therapy are also covered.

Medicare Part B does come with a monthly premium, and it has coverage limits. In 2012, you could pay between $99.90 and $319.70 per month for your Part B premium, depending on your income.

For more information, contact the Medicare helpline 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227), TTY 1-877-486-2048. If you have questions about Medicare Made Clear, call 1-877-619-5582, TTY 711, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. local time, seven days a week.

Resources:

Understand Your Medicare Enrollment Periods: Enrollment date calculator that provides your personal dates

Learn About Medicare: Information about coverage, costs and more

Medicare.gov: The official U.S. government site for Medicare

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