Today’s retirees are finding themselves buried in debt due to uncovered gaps in their Medicare Parts A and B. It happens so often that it’s not much of a shock anymore. Anywhere you seem to go, it is immensely difficult for seniors to have a fully comprehensive plan offered for a premium that is doable on what’s often a fixed income. Fortunately, this is where gap insurance can come into play and can help save the day. It might even be a life saver for certain seniors.
Senior Medicare in Jersey City: Facts and Figures
- There are 26,820 senior citizens living in Jersey City right now
- There 9 hospitals in the Jersey City area where seniors can get emergency and/or in-patient care
- 21% of New Jersey seniors have a Medicare Advantage plan
- 26% of seniors have a Medicare Supplement (Medigap) plan
- Which leaves 53% of seniors potentially uninsured or underinsured against costly Medicare coverage gaps!
It is a sad truth that chronic ailments become more pervasive with age. It is simply what happens as the human body begins to cease functioning as well as it once did. Usually, these are the diseases which we carry for the rest of our lives, as well as the costs associated with them. As if that wasn’t difficult enough to handle, it is not just possible but likely that we may have more than one disease at a time. This could lead to outlandish medical expenses that could cripple even the most financially sound senior, if they are under- or uninsured. The chart below details the common chronic diseases among seniors.
|Disease||Prevalence (in Jersey City)|
|High Blood Pressure||29%|
|Coronary Heart Disease||5%|
Healthcare Costs in Jersey City, NJ
Of course, all of us are concerned with getting the proper care and the cost of that care. Prescriptions, monitors, patient care while in the hospital, outpatient, general visits, all of these add to the entire cost. Seniors are living longer, but at times that can become just more time to pay more bills, since medical costs continue to rise annually. Considering those two factors, it’s understandable how costs can quickly become unmanageable for even those who have saved ahead of time. It is vital to be informed about today’s health care options for seniors, in order to protect your life and health into your golden years.
|Disease||Prevalence (in Jersey City)||Annual Cost of Treatment|
|High Blood Pressure||29%||$356|
|Coronary Heart Disease||5%||$8,882|
Medicare Advantage Savings in Jersey City, NJ
While Medicare Advantage is not government-issued, it is government-approved. Technically, Medicare Advantage is a separate, private insurance plan, but with very unique benefits. Insurance costs aren’t paid for by the government, but instead they redirect your intended costs to Medicare Advantage, and any remainder becomes the patient premium. This cost can be, in many cases, as low as $0 a month. Medicare Advantage must cover at least the same as Medicare Parts A & B, but many outside insurers offer add-on benefits in exchange for a higher premium.
Medicare Advantage plans offer better coverage for the needs of seniors with these common chronic illnesses, according to the statements of those seniors themselves. Every illness, but especially those that are long-term and near the end of life, requires consistent management to alleviate symptoms and ensure a good quality of life. This can include prescriptions, testing items, frequent doctor visits, and more. As these conditions worsen, costs still continue to increase. Fortunately, there are Medicare Advantage plans which can cover even more than a Traditional Medicare plan, even when said Medicare plan includes extras like Part D. To be ready for your remaining future, you have to prepare beforehand with Medicare Advantage.
Medicare Advantage plans cover every bit as much as Medicare Parts A and B, and then even more. They can include all of those doctor visits and pieces of equipment, as well as potentially a plan for necessary drugs. A majority of the offered plans are presented with an option to include any combination of the variety of expenses – even dental or vision. Since the government pays a portion of the Medicare Advantage premium, many seniors can enjoy an additional monthly premium starting as low as $0. Coinsurance and copays will still be patient responsibilities, as well as out-of-pocket costs, but they will be significantly reduced.
Medicare Supplement (Medigap) Savings in Jersey City, NJ
There is another type of policy called Medigap, which is a Medicare supplement. They work a bit differently to a Medicare Advantage policy, but they can still save a great amount of money, particularly when covering gaps in Medicare Part A. The biggest chronic conditions, like coronary heart disease or kidney disease, can cost thousands just for the stay in the hospital and treatments while there. These stays can be incredibly long, and after a certain point, Traditional Medicare stops coverage. You will have to have some sort of backup coverage, or face paying astronomical costs to continue care.
Right now, there are four plans designed to cover the gaps in Part A of Traditional Medicare. These plans are: Plans A, D, K, and L. Other plans cover gaps in Part A as well as gaps in Part B, which will be discussed below. If you don’t think you will have extended Medicare Part B costs and are largely concerned with Part A, then you will be able to save even more, as plans which cover only Part A gaps are available at a lower premium. This could save a considerable amount of money as well over time.
Medigap plans B, C, F, G, M, and N, cover gaps in Medicare Part A as well as select aspects of gaps in Medicare Part B. The more in-depth coverage your plan offers, the higher your monthly premium will be. However, this also means fewer out-of-pocket expenses and unexpected financial hits. Take note, Plan F is retiring soon, and will not be available for enrollment after the year 2020. But the good news is you still have a limited amount of time to enroll if you want to get grandfathered into the most comprehensive plan currently available.
Traditional Medicare Part B covers any medical aspect that Part A cannot. This generally includes outpatient procedures, regular office visits, and medical testing home equipment. Responsibilities like coinsurance and copays will remain with the patient, as well as any premium. These costs too can be hard to handle, but thankfully there is no shortage of choices to help further reduce them.
Medicare Advantage has coverage options for prescriptions, dental, and vision, for a higher premium. However, Medicare Supplement Insurance does not. Original Medicare offers Part D for these coverages, which can be purchased with or without any other Original Medicare parts. A Google search for Jersey City plus the terms “dental” or “vision” and “insurance” can yield several alternative options as well, many of which are quite cost-saving.
For all seniors in Jersey City, it is of the utmost importance that you understand the principles and advantages of a supplemental Medicare health plan. These can be the difference between living through your golden years or having them rust and turn to bronze years. The rising cost of medicine and care is out of control, but what we can control is how we prepare to face the inevitable. You absolutely have to find a Medicare supplement policy that fits your needs, yet doesn’t break the bank. We want to help you do exactly that.
|Medigap Plan||Minimum Monthly Premium||Maximum Monthly Premium||Average Estimated Monthly Premium (Part B Premium Included)|
|Plan F (high deductible)||$48||$86||$203|