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Action Plan for When You’re New to Medicare

Now that you understand the basics of Medicare, you’re ready to start planning.

If it wasn’t for Medicare, health care might become really expensive at age 65 and beyond. Medicare comes in Parts A, B, C and D. Parts A and B are called “Original Medicare” and are provided by the government. Parts A and B cover some basics – like hospital stays and doctor visits – but they don’t cover everything.

Parts A and B are just the beginning. You have choices that you can select to personalize the type of coverage you get.

Medicare Advantage, Part C, is an “all in one” alternative to Original Medicare offered through private insurance carriers like Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas. These bundled plans include Part A, Part B and Part D prescription drug coverage with a Preferred Provider Organization (PPO). Plans include supplemental benefits like vision, hearing, dental and fitness memberships. These plans are typically available in specific geographic areas.

If you stick with Original Medicare, adding a Part D prescription drug plan stacked with a Medicare Supplement plan completes your coverage. Both Part D and Medicare Supplement plans are offered through private insurance carriers like Blue Cross. Part D helps with the cost of prescription drugs. While Medicare Supplement plans are not part of Medicare, they can play an important role to help bridge the gaps in your Medicare coverage by helping pay for some out-of-pocket costs not covered by Original Medicare.

Your Countdown to 65 Action Plan

6 to 9 months before you turn 65

  • Learn about Medicare Parts A, B, C and D.
  • Understand how Medicare Supplement plans work.
  • Attend a seminar or speak with a Blue Cross advisor to learn about your Medicare options and ask questions.
  • Meet with your employee benefits manager if you are still working.

3 to 6 months before you turn 65

  • Compare plans available in your area.
  • Determine if you will get Medicare automatically or need to sign up manually.
  • Ask your doctors if they participate in Medicare and/or the Blue Cross Medicare Advantage PPO.

0 to 3 months before you turn 65

  • Decide how you want to get your Medicare coverage.
  • Add a Medicare Supplement plan.
  • Add a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (Part D).
  • A Medicare Advantage Plan (Plan C) may be available in your area to enroll in.

Your 65th birthday

  • Enjoy the good life!

Now that you have an action plan, let’s talk about your options. We are here to help you with questions you have on plan selections and enrolling. Please call our advisors at 866-627-6705 to get started.

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Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas is not connected with or endorsed by the U.S. Government or the federal Medicare program.