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What's The Deal With Medicare?

May 19, 2020

If you’re like most of us, you’ve probably been thinking about your health quite a bit lately — especially if you’re approaching retirement. Anticipating your future medical costs can feel daunting. When it comes to your health, Medicare may be an important part of your retirement strategy.

Age Matters

Outside of certain unique circumstances, Medicare has strict rules governing when you become eligible for the program. In general, you can apply for Medicare:

  • As early as three months before the month you turn 65
  • During the month you turn 65
  • Up to three months after the month you turn 651

Secondary Coverage

If you’re actively working but meet the requirements above, Medicare can still be useful. That's because if you have insurance through your employer at the time you apply, Medicare can become your secondary insurance. If you are still working, be sure to check your company policy regarding the transition of employees to Medicare.

Healthcare Breakdown

So Part A is the "default," but a retired household faces three types of health-care expenses:

  1. A household may have the expense of premiums for Medicare Part B (which covers physician and outpatient services) and Part D (which covers drug-related expenses). Typically, Part B and Part D are taken out of a person’s Social Security check before it is mailed, so the premium cost is often overlooked by retirement-minded individuals.
  2. The household should expect to pay for co-payments related to Medicare-covered services that are not paid by Medigap or other health insurance.
  3. The retired household should expect to pay for dental care, eyeglasses, and hearing aids, which are typically not covered by Medicare or other insurance programs.

Healthcare costs in retirement can definitely add up and you also could also face surcharges on Medicare premiums.

There are a lot of decisions to consider, but the good news is you have choices regarding your healthcare expenses in retirement.

If you have any questions or want to chat about your options, please don't hesitate to reach out. 

From checklists to flow charts and more, we can provide you with resources to help make understanding your options simple. Email us at and put "Medicare Toolkit" in the subject line.

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1. Healthline, 2020

2., 2019