Planning Health Insurance For The Elderly – Simplified!
As with any insurance, the insured will definitely be overwhelmed by the myriad of choices when drafting their own insurance portfolio. They’ll have to think about the coverage they need, the premium they’re willing to pay, the best companies to buy their insurance from…
And for the elderly, this matter gets even more complicating – besides the jumble of benefits they need to take into consideration, public health insurance schemes, such Medicare and Medicaid slaps them in the face with paragraphs after paragraphs of explanation and terms. Such astronomical amounts of words are enough to put anyone out cold.
There is indeed a lot to take into consideration when planning for a senior’s health insurance portfolio. It will be rather overwhelming, with so many options open for the elderly. However, fret not: if you’re thinking of planning your own elderly health insurance portfolio, we’ll help you simplify the overly-complicated process of this stage of drafting your health insurance by listing out the options available for you.
- Employer-Subsidized Health Insurance
If you are a long-time employee of a large company, you may want to have a look at the possible employer-subsidized health insurance packages available. As a retiree, you might be entitled to these health insurance policies that may offer certain coverage such as Specific Dread Disease Insurance or Long Term Care Insurance at a discounted premium. Do not underestimate these discounts – as a senior, you will be subjected to increased premiums if you were to purchase private insurances. The coverage might not be much, but it’ll help relieve you of some of the financial burden you might face in your sunset years – remember, you do not have a steady source of income now, and every penny saved counts.
- Public Health Insurance
If your employer does not offer sponsored health insurances for the elderly, fret not, for the nation has another option for you: state-sponsored health insurance. Also known as Medicare, this scheme offers next-to-zero premiums for some health insurance coverage.
Medicare is a nation-wide public health insurance scheme that insures people aged 65 years and above, or the disabled and mentally handicapped, with medical and hospitalization coverage. There are 4 parts to this scheme: Parts A, B, C and D.
1. Part A – Hospitalization Costs
Part A Medicare will provide the insured the above-mentioned coverage at zero premiums if he or she has paid their Medicare taxes for a minimum of 10 years. It is noteworthy that it will fully cover your 1st 60 days of hospitalization and the first 20 days of care in a nursing home.
2. Part B – Outpatient, Doctor Consultation and Clinical Services Costs
Part B Medicare will cover about 80% of doctor and outpatient services. These services, however, must be approved by the state. In addition, you will have to pay an additional $56/month of premium to be qualified under this portion of the Medicare scheme.
There is also the Medigap scheme – this insurance policy insures you of the amount that you will otherwise pay yourself if you have reached the caps set by Medicare Part A and B. You should go for this scheme during the first 6 months into your Part B Medicare plan – the insurer must accept you regardless of your prevailing medical condition.
3. Part C – Medicare Advantage
Part C Medicare Advantage is a private health insurance plan, where beneficiaries under this plan will receive benefits from Part A and B, along with benefits from the following type of organizations:
- Health Maintenance Organization
- Preferred Provider Organizatin
- Provider-Sponsored Organization
- Medical Savings Account
- Any other private service providers.
4. Part D – Subscription Drug Benefit
The elderly under this scheme will be able to receive subsidies on prescription drug fees. However, as of 2010, this fee is capped at $2,830 per annum, which might not be enough for medication for critical illnesses.
Long Term Health Insurance Plans
At this point, you may be wondering: If I’m looking for health insurance for the elderly, isn’t Medicare enough? The answer is this: No.
You must remember that Medicare does not cover long-term healthcare. If you are hospitalized, above 100 days, Medicare will not payout for your medical claims. As such, it is important to purchase long-term health insurance for the elderly – it is grim, but there is a high chance that seniors will be hospitalized for long periods of time.
Planning health insurance for the elderly is quite a hassle – aside from public health insurances, you will have to review your own health insurance, and even plan for unseen illnesses in the future. However, with these options laid out in front of you, the process will definitely be simplified; you’ll have a better idea of how to insure yourself in your sunset years.