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Understand Your Medicare Costs

One of the things that I tell people all the time is that Medicare is not free! Although Medicare can be a huge help when it comes to paying for medical bills, you may still have to pay for a portion of the services and medications you receive. Some of the immediate out-of-pocket costs you may have to worry are:

Upfront fees for Medicare:

Deductible. Before Medicare starts paying for your medical care, you may have to pay a flat fee every year called a “deductible.” Medicare Parts A and B in have annual deductibles, and some MA and Part D prescription drug plans also have deductibles. Medicare supplemental — or Medigap — policies often cover original Medicare deductibles.

Copayment. When you go to see a doctor or receive a service, there may be a small fee associated with your visit. This is called a “copayment.” For example, under some Part C (Medicare Advantage plans) you may have a copay every time you see a doctor or get another medical service.

Coinsurance. In addition to a copayment, you may have to also pay what are called “coinsurance fees.” Just like copayments, you may be charged coinsurance fees whenever you visit the doctor or receive a medical service. If you original Medicare, you will owe 20% of the cost of the service. So, if you get a blood test that costs $100, Medicare will pay $80 and you’ll be responsible for $20. Medigap plans, however, usually cover your 20% share.

Monthly, recurring fees for Medicare:

Premiums. Most people don’t have to pay monthly fees called “premiums” for Medicare Part A (Medicare Part A mainly pays for medical services that you get while you’re in the hospital).

There may be monthly fees for Medicare Part B. These fees depend on your income level: the higher your income, the higher your monthly fee.

Depending on your plan, there may be monthly fees for Medicare Part C.

Medicare Part D (this prescription drug coverage).

Lastly, you will also have to pay monthly fees for Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage. As of 2019, the average monthly fee for Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage is $33.19.

SPEAKER
Stevaughn Bush

Medicare Consultant

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