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Group Benefits: Is A Medicare Plan Better For Older Employees?

By October 1, 2012 February 19th, 2015 No Comments

business_man_shirt_tieHow can you help your workers who are nearing their 65th birthday which Medicare options would be right for them?  If you offer a company health care program, your associates may be covered, however, if your plan does not meet the standards of Medicare’s plan, there could be long term penalties that your associates will face if or when in the future, they decide they will take coverage under Medicare.

For the most part, if your current health insurance meets the employee’s health needs, they should still check to determine how your health insurance works with Medicare.  In most instances, it would be a good idea for your employee to apply for Medicare part A and Medicare part B because there could be extra help that is available.

As an employer, you want to be sure that your employees are making the best decisions when it comes to their health insurance, yet with the laws changing and idiosyncrasies of Medicare, it’s difficult to stay up to speed with the nuances of when Medicare may impose a fine or when Medicare is a better choice than the company plan.   One of the considerations for your company plan is that it has to be “better” or at least equal to the coverage offered by Medicare to avoid penalties for individuals who opt not to take Medicare.  Having an expert review the plans will show what is covered and what isn’t to determine the best course of action for an individual.

The types of questions most Medicare candidates need to ask themselves during this process include:

  • Am I in good health?
  • How often do I see the doctor?
  • Do I take prescription drugs?
  • How much can I afford to spend on health insurance?
  • Would I be willing to change doctors?
Original Medicare, or Medicare plan A and Medicare plan B cover some, but not all of expense associated with hospital, and medical.  It does not include prescription drugs.Programs called Medigap or Medicare Supplemental can fill the gap, and they also can be tailored to match the needs of the covered person.   Part D covers the prescription drugs programs, however there may be a need to cover the “donut” or gap that the Medicare plan D inherently poses if a person takes expensive prescription medication.

Since enrollment is open only once a year, it’s important to help your associates get the right information to make informed decisions.  HR Knowledge has a Medicare Specialist who understands the process, the Medicare idiosyncrasies and can assist your employees with making the right decision.   We offer free one-to-one or group information sessions that address the questions about Medicare that your older workers may have.
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