Medicare Coverage for Those Under 65
How to Get a Medicare Supplement Plan or Medicare Advantage Plan if You Receive Medicare Due to a Disability
If you are under 65, you can be covered by Medicare if you have been a disabled beneficiary under Social Security or Railroad Retirement Board for more than twenty-four (24) months. You also qualify if you are disabled, over age 50, and a widow or widower.
Medicare will normally cover approximately 80% of your medical bills. However, Medicare by itself leaves some gaping holes in your coverage, so you’ll want to also have a Medicare supplement plan, or a Medicare Advantage plan.
Once you have Medicare Part B, in most states you will have an open enrollment period of six months from the time your Part B coverage goes into effect, where you are guaranteed acceptance in a Medicare Supplement plan regardless of your current or previous health status.
Several states make at least one Medicare supplement (also known as “Medigap”) policy available for those under age 65. Go here to see the Medicare supplement plan types available to those under age 65, by state.
If there is no Medicare supplement plan in your state (or you find them to be unaffordable), you can also look into a Medicare Advantage plan. These plans do accept all Medicare beneficiaries unless they have End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). They are sponsored by Medicare, which pays private companies for providing the coverage, but you are limited to a specific network of doctors. Unlike Medicare by itself, these plans do have stop-losses that will prevent unlimited exposure to high medical expenses.
Once you turn 65 you will again have an open enrollment period for a Medicare Supplement plan. This may enable you to switch to a plan that is priced better or works better for your needs.
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