Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. Next Financial Crisis Is Already Here! John Lewis 99% Profits CRASH - Retail Sector Collapse - Nadeem_Walayat
2.Why Is Apple Giving This Tiny Stock A $900 Million Opportunity? - James Burgess
3.Gold Price Trend Analysis - - Nadeem_Walayatt
4.The Beginning of the End of the Dollar - Richard_Mills
5.Stock Market Trend Forecast Update - - Nadeem_Walayat
6.Hindenburg Omen & Consumer Confidence: More Signs of Stock Market Trouble in 2019 - Troy_Bombardia
7.Precious Metals Sector: It’s 2013 All Over Again - P_Radomski_CFA
8.Central Banks Have Gone Rogue, Putting Us All at Risk - Ellen_Brown
9.Gold Stocks Forced Capitulation - Zeal_LLC
10.The Post Bubble Market Contraction Thesis Receives Validation - Plunger
Last 7 days
Next Tory Leader, Prime Minister Forecast and Betting Market Odds - 18th Nov 18
The Fed's Misleading Money Supply Measures - 17th Nov 18
Stock Market Outlook: Why the Economy is Bullish for Stocks Going into 2019 - 17th Nov 18
NO DEAL HARD BrExit Tory Chaos, Theresa May Leadership Challenge - 17th Nov 18
Gold vs Several Key Investments - 17th Nov 18
GDX Gold Mining Stocks Q3 18 Fundamentals - 17th Nov 18
Is Gold Under or Overpriced? - 17th Nov 18
Active Managers are Bearish on Stocks. A Bullish Contrarian Sign - 16th Nov 18
Will The Fed Sacrifice Retirement Portfolio Values For The "Common Good"? - 16th Nov 18
BrExit War - Tory Party About to Replace Theresa May for NO DEAL BrExit - 16th Nov 18
Aspire Global Makes Significant Financial Strides - 16th Nov 18
Gold Oil and Commodities …Back to the Future ? - 16th Nov 18
Will Oil Price Crash Lead to “Contagion” for the U.S. Stock Market? - 15th Nov 18
How NOT to Be Among the MANY Stock Investors Fooled by This Market Myth - 15th Nov 18
Tory BrExit Chaos Cripples UK Economy, Wrecks Housing Market Confidence - 15th Nov 18
Stocks Could End 2018 With A Dramatic Rally - 15th Nov 18
What Could Be the Last Nail in This Stock Bull Markets Coffin - 15th Nov 18
Defensive Stock Sectors Outperforming, Just Like During the Dot-com Bubble - 15th Nov 18
Buying Your First Home? Here’s How to Save Money - 15th Nov 18
US Economy Ten Points or Ten Miles to ‘Bridge Out’? - 14th Nov 18
US Stocks: Whither from Here? - 14th Nov 18
Know exactly when to Enter&Exit trades using this... - 14th Nov 18
Understanding the Benefits of Keeping a Trading Journal - 14th Nov 18
S&P 500 Below 2,800 Again, New Downtrend or Just Correction? - 13th Nov 18
Warning: Precious Metals’ Gold and Silver Prices are about to Collapse! - 13th Nov 18
Why the End of the Longest Crude Oil Bull Market Since 2008? - 13th Nov 18
Stock Market Counter-trend Rally Reaches .618 Retracement - 13th Nov 18
How to Create the Best Website Content and Generate Organic Traffic - 13th Nov 18
Why the Stock Market Will Pullback, Rally, and Roll Into a Bear Market - 13th Nov 18
Stock Markets Around the World are Crashing. What Not to Worry About? - 12th Nov 18
Cyclical Commodities Continue to Weaken, Gold Moves in Relation - 12th Nov 18
Olympus Tough TG-5 Camera Stuck or Dead Pixels, Rubbish Video Auto Focus - 12th Nov 18
5 Things That Precede Gold Price Major Bottoms - 12th Nov 18
Big US Stocks Q3 Fundamentals - 12th Nov 18
How "Free Money" Helped Create Sizzling Housing Market & REIT Gains - 12th Nov 18
One Direction More Likely for Bitcoin Price - 12th Nov 18
The Place of HSE Software in Today's Business - 12th Nov 18
Gold Asks: Are US Bonds Overvalued? - 11th Nov 18
Why the Stock Market Will Pullback Before Heading Higher - 11th Nov 18
GDX - Will you Buy This Hated Stock with Me? - 11th Nov 18
Christmas and Halloween LED Dynamic Projector Light Review - 11th Nov 18
Wall Street Veteran: Why I Don’t Lend to Family and Friends - 10th Nov 18
Stocks Breaking Higher, but Resistance Ahead - 10th Nov 18
Stock Market Was Supposed to “Crash Like 1987” - 10th Nov 18
SPX : The Incredibull Stock Market Plays On - 9th Nov 18
USD/CAD – The Moment of Truth Is Coming - 9th Nov 18
Is the Stock Market’s Rally “All Good To Go”? - 8th Nov 18
End in Sight for 'Unloved' Silver - 8th Nov 18
Outlook for Gold & Silver Precious Metals Sector is 'Positive' - 8th Nov 18
A Great Day for Metals as Platinum Price Breaks Out - 8th Nov 18
Future US Interest Rates, Financial Markets, and the FED - 8th Nov 18
Buying an Approved Used Land Rover From a Dealer - What You Need to Know! - 8th Nov 18

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Free Online Trading Session

Everything You Need to Know About Medicare in the United States

Personal_Finance / Health and Fitness Nov 05, 2018 - 01:10 PM GMT

By: Dylan_Moran


Started in 1965 under the Social Security Administration, Medicare is a single-payer national health insurance program aimed at providing health insurance to people who are 65 and older, younger individuals with disabilities and those suffering from End-Stage Renal Disease.

It covers hospital care, outpatient services and prescription drugs. In 2015, Medicare covered 16.3 percent of the United States’ population and in that year alone, 56 million people were enrolled in the program. 47 million of those individuals were the elderly and approximately nine million had disabilities.

But how exactly does Medicare in the United States work? Here’s what you need to know:

Medicare Is Funded by Taxpayers

Taxpayers in the United States are required to pay 1.45% of their earnings into the Federal Insurance Contributions Act that goes towards Medicare. Employers also pay an additional 1.45% and self-employed individuals pay the entire 2.9%. Individuals earning more than $200,000 and couples earning more than $250,000 together are required to pay an additional 0.9% tax.

In 2015, Medicare earned $630 billion, 80% of which came from payroll taxes and general revenues. It also generates income from state payments, interests, beneficiary premiums and social security benefit taxations.

Medicare Enrollment Has a Deadline

You are given a seven-month window to sign up for Medicare. This includes the three months before your 65th birthday, your birthday month and the three months after your birthday. You will be automatically enrolled in Parts A and B if you’re already taking Social Security benefits. You have the option, however, to refuse Part B if you don’t want to pay for the monthly cost. If you’re still employed and have group health insurance, you will need to sign up for Medicare within eight months of losing coverage. Failure to follow these initial enrollment periods will result to penalties.

If you missed signing up for Part B during the initial seven-month window, you can do it during the general enrollment period from January 1 to March 31, but you need to pay a 10% penalty for life for each annual period you delay.

Open enrollment runs from October 15 to December 17. During this period, you can switch between Medicare and Medicare Advantage. In 2019, Advantage enrollees will be allowed to switch to a new Advantage or original Medicare plan during the general enrollment period. In addition, you can switch to a Medicare Advantage plan or Part D plan outside the enrollment period if those plans have a five-star quality rating in your area.

Medicare Is Not Entirely Free

Medicare plans are divided into parts. Part A covers hospital services and is free if either you or your spouse has paid Medicare payroll taxes for at least ten years. Part B, which covers outpatient services has a standard premium of $134 per month. Part D covers prescription costs and has a monthly premium of $35. This cost varies, however, depending on the plan you choose.

Aside from monthly premiums, you may also be subject to deductibles, co-payments and other out-of-pocket costs. In 2018, Part B has a deductible of $183 and Part A has a deductible of $1,340 for each benefit period if the beneficiary is hospitalized. Additional costs apply for hospital stays exceeding 60 days.

Medigap Supplemental Plans Can Fill Medicare Gaps

If you don’t want to shell out extra money for out-of-pocket costs, private insurance companies offer medigap supplemental insurance plans to cover co-payments, deductibles and other expenses. Medigap policies are identified by letters A through N, and each policy that goes with the same letter should offer the same benefits. Their only difference is cost. Plan F is a popular choice among beneficiaries because it offers comprehensive coverage.

High Earners Pay Higher Medicare Premiums

If the adjusted gross income is more than $85,000 for singles and $170,000, premiums for married individuals filing jointly, parts B and D of their Medicare plan will come with a surcharge. In 2018, high earners pay $187.50 to $428.60 per month for part B. They also needed to pay an additional $13 to $74.80 for part D on top of their monthly premiums.

Medicare has benefited millions of individuals since it was first introduced, and it can also help you during your later years if you know exactly how it works and how you can take advantage of its offers.

By Dylan M.

© 2018 Copyright Dylan M. - All Rights Reserved Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.

© 2005-2018 - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.

Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in