Helping Your Patients Understand Medicare Coverage
In Ohio, more than two million people rely on Medicare, and it is essential they have all the information they need to make an informed decision about their Medicare plan selection.
The Ohio Senior Health Insurance Information Program (OSHIIP), a division of the Ohio Department of Insurance is an excellent source for objective information for Ohio’s senior citizens. OSHIIP has comprised this list of the top five Medicare questions (with answers) that they receive most frequently and you can share with your patients when they have questions.
What is Medicare?
Medicare is federal health insurance for individuals over 65, disabled (typically for two years), and those diagnosed with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). Those on Medicare receive benefits under Original Medicare or a Medicare health plan such as a Medicare Advantage plan.
What Is the Difference between Medicare Supplemental Insurance and Medicare Advantage Plans?
Medicare Supplemental insurance policies (also called MedSup or Medigap) are private policies that pay after, and only after, Original Medicare has paid first. Medicare Advantage Plans, or Part C, replace Original Medicare and Medicare Supplemental Insurance and are a sole source of coverage. These plans are generally managed care plans that require you to use a network of providers.
Does Medicare Cover Preventive Benefits?
Yes. Medicare covers preventive services including vaccinations. Talk to your provider about what preventive benefits you need (such as the flu vaccination) and how often.
Do I Qualify for Financial Assistance with Out-of-Pocket Medicare Costs?
Medicare offers extra help to pay for out-of-pocket costs associated with Medicare Part D and prescription drug coverage. Each state has Medicaid programs to assist with Medicare out-of-pocket costs. These financial assistance programs are based on your countable income and resources.
What is the Best Source of Objective Medicare Information?
OSHIIP provides objective, unbiased Medicare information to Medicare patients and their caregivers, including plan comparisons in your area and how to protect yourself from Medicare scams and improper sales practices. Please call 1-800-686-1578, Monday through Friday, between 7:30 am and 5:00 pm. You can also visit www.insurance.ohio.gov for additional information.
OSHIIP is available to help answer these and any other Medicare-related questions for your patients.