Medicare 101

Medicare is the federal government health insurance program for people age 65 and older and younger people living with certain illnesses or disabilities.

For those turning 65, Medicare enrollment begins 3 months before and ends 3 months after the month of your birthday. Failing to enroll during this time can result in a 10% Medicare premium penalty that doesn't go away. So it's important to understand your options and get enrolled on time! Learn more about Medicare options below. Or watch this video for more information on Medicare basics.


    Original Medicare (Parts A & B) OR Medicare Advantage (Part C)
Hospital Insurance (Part A) Watch Video Helps cover
  • Inpatient care in a hospital
  • Hospice care
  • Skilled nursing facility care
Part A $0/mo for most people* Out-of-pocket limit: Unlimited* Sign up at  
  • Medicare Advantage is an "all in one" alternative to Original Medicare (Parts A & B).
  • These bundled plans include Part A, Part B and usually Part D.
  • They may include extra benefits like hearing and dental.

Compare Plans & Pricing

Medical Insurance (Part B) Watch Video Helps cover
  • Services from doctors and other health care providers
  • Outpatient care
Part B $170.10/mo or higher* Out-of-pocket limit: Unlimited* Sign up at  
(Part D) Optional Watch Video
Helps cover
  • Outpatient prescription drugs
  • Generic and brand name drugs
Optional Compare Part D Plans & Pricing (must have Part A or B)  
Medicare Supplement (Medigap) Optional Watch Video Helps cover
  • Most Medicare Supplement plans limit out of pocket costs like copayments, coinsurance and deductibles.
Optional Compare Plans & Pricing (must have Part A or B)  
Doctor and
Hospital Network
Covered by approximately 95% of doctors and hospitals nationwide Browse Doctors   In network only Browse Doctors and Hospitals Browse Dentists
Additional Coverage Options in addition to Medicare Cancer and Hospital Insurance
Dental Insurance
Travel Insurance
  Medicare Advantage often includes dental, hearing and vision. Cancer and Hospital Insurance
Dental Insurance
Travel Insurance

Preparing for
What’s Possible




6-18 months before your 65th birthday

Planning for Medicare is an important step before making a decision. Knowing the important dates, understanding the differences between the available insurance plan options in your area, and being aware of your current medical insurance needs is important to choosing the right plan for your needs.

Eligibility period

Initial 7-Month Eligibility Period

  • Pre-existing conditions do not apply as long as you enroll during your initial 7-month enrollment period
  • Original Medicare may cost more later if you don't sign up during your initial 7-month enrollment period
  • Apply early to account for any issues that may arise during the enrollment process
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Future Enrollment Periods

Switching Plans
Medicare Advantage and Part D
You can switch plans every year during the Annual Enrollment Period (Oct. 15-Dec. 7)

Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans can be changed at any time, subject to medical underwriting.

Qualifying life event, like moving out of state, can change plans with no underwriting.

Signing up Later
People who missed their initial 7-month enrollment period or let their coverage lapse may sign up during the General Enrollment Period (Jan. 1-March 31).

  • Penalties may apply to Part A and Part B & D due to federal regulations if you miss your Initial Eligibility Period
  • Pre-existing conditions may limit your options and influence pricing

70A_1122B Not connected with or endorsed by the U.S. Government or the Federal Medicare Program.