Council on Aging Answers 2017 - 100

COUNCIL ON AGING - SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

5 Big Mistakes In Medicare Enrollment
Mistake 1: Signing up too early or too late for
Medicare and its parts. If you are aging into Medicare, your initial enrollment period is based on your
65th birthday. To avoid long-term penalties, make sure
you know what choices you have to make and when
to make them. If you or your spouse are still working
when you turn 65 and your insurance meets certain
requirements, it may make sense for you to delay enrollment in Parts A, B, and D. To understand the rules,
contact a Council on Aging - Southern California HICAP counselor at 800-434-0222.
Mistake 2: Not understanding the difference between a Medicare Supplement and a Medicare Advantage policy. If you are new to Medicare, you have a
fundamental choice to make: enroll in original Medicare or opt into a Medicare Advantage plan. It is important to understand the pros and cons of both types of
coverage.
Original Medicare is a fee-for-service program. Most
consumers supplement the government benefit with a
private Medicare Supplement (also called Medigap) pol-

icy as well as a Part D plan for their prescription drugs.
A Medicare Supplement policy may cover some services
that are not included under the standard Medicare Parts
A and B as well as some out-of-pocket costs such as coinsurance costs for care at skilled nursing facilities, the
Part A deductible, and foreign travel emergency care. If
you choose a Medicare Supplement policy, you will pay
an additional premium. You won't need prior authorization to use specialists or to get second opinions.
A Medicare Advantage Plan (Part C), on the other
hand, takes the place of original Medicare Parts A and
B. These plans work more like group insurance. They
are sold through approved, licensed insurance companies and may have an additional monthly premium.
Often, Medicare Advantage plans include prescription
drug coverage as well as services that original Medicare
does not such as health/wellness programs and vision
care. However, a Medicare Advantage plan may also
limit a person's ability to use doctors and hospitals, and
also require prior authorization to use specialty services
Mistake 3: Guessing when picking specific plans. It

INSURANCE

Do you have questions
about Medicare?
Meet with an AGA Medicare Options
Agent to talk about your options! Our
agents will help you make the most
of your Medicare benefits by finding a
plan that best suits your needs and your
budget.
There is no cost or obligation, so join us
during one of our upcoming events and
get your important questions answered.
To find an event near you,
please call: 1-877-242-4220
TTY 711, M-F 9am-5pm
By calling the number above you will be directed to a licensed insurance agent. A sales person will be present with
information and applications. For accommodation of persons with special needs at sales meetings, please call
1-877-242-4220, TTY 711, M-F 9am-5pm. Medicare has neither reviewed nor endorsed this information.
100

Answers Guide 2017	

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Council on Aging Answers 2017

Contents
Council on Aging Answers 2017 - Intro
Council on Aging Answers 2017 - Cover1
Council on Aging Answers 2017 - Cover2
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