Medicare Part B 2020
You might be able to save money on medical care if you sign up for Medicare Part B. Now, you usually can’t sign up for it by itself, and we’ll get to why that is and explain how much Part B will cover for you. We’ll even tell you how much you may end up paying for this medical insurance plan, so read on to find out the answers to all of these and more.
In most cases,Medicare Part B 2020 is often sold with Part A. They are somewhat inseparable, and they make up what is known as Original Medicare. If you want one, you usually have to get the other as well.
The reason for that is that they cover very similar things related to the most common medical expenses. Part B generally takes care of outpatient care, while part A covers you for most of your inpatient care. They won’t cover all medical expenses together, but they do cover a lot of them and most of the ones that you will pay for most commonly from your own pockets.
Together, they form some incredible coverage that is going to make it easy for most seniors to afford their medical care, even if they go to the hospital frequently or see their doctor routinely for checkups.
What It Covers for You
When you choose Medicare’s Part B insurance plan, then you get a lot of coverage. This takes care of many hospital and doctor’s office expenses. Generally, you can figure Part B will pay for the procedure or service if it involves a short stay at the hospital, such as less than 24 hours, in most cases. This covers a lot of tests, surgeries, checkups and other short stay services.
Ambulance care and getting a second opinion are covered under Part B of Medicare as well. You’ll even be covered for a lot of your mental health treatment. Therapy, visits to the counsellor and both inpatient and outpatient care are covered under Part B’s mental health insurance coverage.
Hospitalization can be covered too, if it is only partial hospitalization. If you have to stay in the hospital for very long, however, then Part A of Medicare will have to cover you for that. You can see then why these two parts are often sold together. It makes sense to be covered by both of them at once.
How Much Part B Costs
There are a few different factors at work when you are trying to determine how much Part B is going to cost you. The monthly premium is the only variable cost for this insurance plan, and it costs $134, on average. Now, if you make a lot of money, then that cost will likely go up for you. If you receive Social Security benefits, however, then the cost goes down, in your case. Medicare Part B can cost more or less depending on how you file your taxes as well. Filing a joint tax return gives you a different price on the premium than if you filed separately.
You will also need to pay for the Part B deductible. This is something you only have to pay once per year, though. It costs $183, and you can have it covered by a Supplement plan or other types of medical insurance. It may be in your best interests to simply pay that deductible out of pocket, though, as it is often cheaper to do that than to pay for the price of a coverage plan to take care of it for you.
Medicare can decide to change the prices on its plans if it wants to. It can change the coverage on them as well. Part B isn’t likely to change for a while, but you do need to be aware that it could change. If any changes are coming down the line, then Medicare will make you aware of these, if you are signed up for any one of its plans.
How to Sign Up
You probably won’t be able to sign up for Medicare Part B- or any Medicare plan, for that matter- whenever you feel like it. There is a period known as Open Enrollment where all the Medicare plans become available. Signing up outside that period doesn’t usually happen, and even then, only under special circumstances. This period comes once every year, and the dates change slightly from year to year, so you may want to look it up in advance before you try to sign up for a Medicare plan.
Part B, as we mentioned, is typically only available with Part A and you purchase it under the Original Medicare plan. You can get the same coverage and more if you choose a Medicare Advantage plan. This is only available through private insurance companies, whereas Original Medicare is only available through Medicare itself.
You can sign up for a term with any Medicare plan. These terms are usually one year long, but you can often sign up for multiple years at once, if you want to lock in your rates. Once the term has expired, you can choose to sign up again or change your plans to something else. It is usually not possible to change plans mid-term.
Is Part B a Good Option for You?
You might be considering Part B, or you might think it isn’t really for you. If you are in good health and approaching the age of eligibility for Part B, you may not believe it is a good fit for your current needs. However, it is advisable for every senior to sign up for original Medicare. You may even qualify to get this coverage plan at a reduced rate, which makes it an even better deal for you.
But Part A and Medicare Part B provide powerful and essential coverage for most people, and it’s probably a good idea for you to sign up for it when you become eligible.