What to know about Medicare Insurance and Health Insurance

So what is Medicare all about...

Minnesota has three kinds of Medicare Insurance plans to choose from that supplement what Medicare doesn't cover.  

Contact our offices in Rochester, Austin or Saint Paul, MN

Medicare is a milestone

Starting the Medicare program is a milestone for American seniors, usually beginning at age 65. For those who are on Social Security Disability Income (SSDI) prior to age 65, you can expect Medicare benefits to start on your 25th month on SSDI or sooner if allowed.

Medicare Plan Choices in Minnesota

1. Medicare Advantage Plans- is known as Medicare Insurance Part C

They include your medical and part D drug plans. Some only include the medical and work well for Veterans who have drug coverage with their VA Benefits.   

How do Medicare Advantage Plans work?  By clicking this link you can inform yourself on what a Medicare Advantage plan is and how it works. 

2. Medicare Supplements-                            

· You get help with covering some of your out-of-pocket expenses not paid by Medicare.

· You're able to keep your own doctor as long as they accept Medicare patients.

· There are no referrals required.

· Coverage goes with you when you travel in the U.S. 

3. Medicare Cost Plans- 

They are a hybrid between a Medicare Advantage Plan and a Medicare Supplement. In 2019 these product are only sold in some counties. It can include a Part D drug plan within the plan or be separate.   

Cost plans will no longer be available in 2019 in most counties in MN. In other counties, Cost plans will remain open for 2019 due to a lack of other Medicare Advantage plan types in certain counties. Cost plans will continue to be available in 2019 for residents of the 21 Minnesota counties listed below:

Aitkin, Lake, Rice, Carlton, LeSueur, Rock, Cook, McLeod, St. Louis, Goodhue, Meeker, Sibley, Itasca, Mille Lacs, Stevens, Kanabec, Pine, Traverse, Koochiching, Pipestone, and Yellow Medicine.

Medicare Part D Rx plans

They are overseen by Medicare but run by insurance companies who contract with Medicare. Each Medicare Part D drug plan must give at least a standard level of coverage set by Medicare. Plans can vary the list of prescription drugs they cover (called a formulary) and how they place drugs into different "tiers" on their formularies. Even if you don't take medications you may want to take a plan so you don't get a permanent penalty if you want to take a plan in the future. Part D Penalty Explained
What does a Medicare Health insurance appointment with our associates look like?  

Call the associate you would like to meet with. We work around your schedule and can meet in the evenings or Saturday by appointment. During your appointment we will explain how Medicare A, B, C, and D all work. We will help you in choosing a plan that fits your needs and budget. We have a variety of plan choices. 

NOTE: It costs nothing to see us, a professional agent! We are paid commissions by the insurance companies we represent and your premiums stay the same price. Remember we represent the insurance companies, but we work for you! 


How Social Security relates to Medicare:  
Are you on Social Security benefits? If yes, then you will automatically start Medicare A and B and it usually coincides with your birth month. You should get a Medicare Card in the mail 3 months prior to your 65th birth month. Even if your birthday is mid-month, you start Medicare A and B on the first day of your birth month. If your birthday is on the 1st, you will start Medicare the month before.
If you are not collecting Social Security benefits and want to continue working or you are waiting for optimum benefits and want Medicare Part B only, you will need to apply online at www.ssa.gov  or in person at the Social Security office. You can't apply online if you have worked past age 65 with group insurance because there is a form your employer must fill in and you need to bring that directly into the Social Security office. Contact your employer for the proper form. or contact Colleen Vaneps (507) 226-8677 or Jordan Gascoigne at (651) 364-1623. Some people like to make an informational counseling appointment with us 4 to 6 months ahead of Medicare age to plan their retirement date if they are still working. Medicare information can be confusing and it's nice to have a professional navigate through the Medicare Insurance web at no cost to you..   
Individual/Family Health Insurance  
Making an appointment with one of our associates for individual/family health insurance quote is easy. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) open enrollment starts November 1st through January 13th of 2020 next year. We have a variety of  health plans for everyone including, co-pays, HSA-Health Savings Account compatible and catastrophic coverage. We don't know what the future holds for the ACA in 2020 but we will be ready to serve you when changes come. You can also pair an ACA plan with one of our individual or family dental plans.  
Employer Provided Health Plans for Small Groups  
Small  Groups are defined by employers with 2 to 50 full-time employees.  Owners are generally counted as employees, so sole proprietorship with  one employee usually fall into this category, as do partnerships without  any employees of 2 or more partners.  


Short-Term Insurance Quotes
Short-term  Insurance can be sold year round and provides temporary health coverage when a life transition leaves you uninsured. You can choose a deductible and coverage level that fits your needs to cover you in the gap.

Ask about our new sharing health plans. You will save on premiums. These plans are known to save 35% to 50% compared to the Affordable Care Act. Note: they are not considered insurance but are called a sharing program.