As you approach age 65, you’ll have an important decision to make about your healthcare coverage. While Original Medicare (Parts A and B) provides essential coverage, it may not cover all of your healthcare needs. That’s where AARP Medicare Advantage plans come in. AARP Medicare Advantage plans, also known as Medicare Part C, are offered through private insurers, like UnitedHealthcare, that contract with Medicare to provide additional benefits and services beyond what Original Medicare covers.
If you’re a member of AARP, you may be curious about what AARP Medicare Advantage plans can offer you. In this guide, we’ll dive into the benefits, costs, and frequently asked questions about AARP Medicare Advantage plans.
Benefits of AARP Medicare Advantage Plans:
- Comprehensive Coverage: AARP Medicare Advantage plans offer all the benefits of Original Medicare (Parts A and B) and often include additional benefits like vision, dental, and hearing coverage. Some plans may also cover transportation to medical appointments and fitness programs.
- Additional Benefits: Many AARP Medicare Advantage plans also offer additional benefits, such as wellness programs, home healthcare services, and health club memberships. These additional benefits can help you stay healthy and active, and they may be included in your monthly premium.
- Customized Plans: AARP Medicare Advantage plans are offered through private insurers, which means they can offer customized plans to meet your unique healthcare needs. You can choose a plan with a lower monthly premium but higher out-of-pocket costs, or a plan with a higher monthly premium but lower out-of-pocket costs. The choice is yours.
- Coordinated Care: AARP Medicare Advantage plans often include coordinated care, which means your primary care doctor will work with a team of healthcare professionals to manage your care. This can help ensure that you receive the right care at the right time and avoid unnecessary hospitalizations.
Costs of AARP Medicare Advantage Plans:
- Monthly Premiums: AARP Medicare Advantage plans may have a monthly premium in addition to your Part B premium. However, some plans may have a $0 monthly premium.
- Deductibles and Co-Pays: AARP Medicare Advantage plans may have deductibles and co-pays for certain services. For example, you may have a $20 co-pay for a doctor’s office visit. However, some plans may have $0 co-pays for certain services.
- Out-of-Pocket Maximums: A ARP Medicare Advantage plans have an out-of-pocket maximum, which is the most you’ll have to pay for covered services in a year. Once you reach your plan’s out-of-pocket maximum, your plan will cover the rest of your healthcare costs for the year.
- Prescription Drug Coverage: Many AARP Medicare Advantage plans include prescription drug coverage, also known as Part D. This coverage can help you save money on your medications and may have a separate monthly premium.
Frequently Asked Questions about AARP Medicare Advantage Plans:
- What is the difference between AARP Medicare Advantage plans and Original Medicare?
AARP Medicare Advantage plans are offered by private insurers and provide all the benefits of Original Medicare (Parts A and B) and often include additional benefits. With AARP Medicare Advantage plans, you may also have lower out-of-pocket costs for certain services.
- Can I enroll in an AARP Medicare Advantage plan if I have pre-existing conditions?
Yes, you can enroll in an AARP Medicare Advantage plan if you have pre-existing conditions. Insurers are not allowed to deny coverage based on pre-existing conditions for AARP Medicare Advantage plans.
- What additional benefits do AARP Medicare Advantage plans offer?
Additional benefits vary depending on the plan, but may include vision, dental, and hearing coverage, transportation to medical appointments, fitness programs, and wellness programs.
- Can I switch from one AARP Medicare Advantage plan to another?
Yes, you can switch from one AARP Medicare Advantage plan to another during the annual enrollment period, which runs from October 15 to December 7 each year.
- What happens if I move out of my plan’s service area?
If you move out of your plan’s service area, you may need to switch to a new plan. However, if you move to an area where your plan is still available, you may be able to keep your plan.
- Do AARP Medicare Advantage plans cover prescription drugs?
Many AARP Medicare Advantage plans include prescription drug coverage, also known as Part D. This coverage can help you save money on your medications and may have a separate monthly premium.
AARP Medicare Advantage plans can offer comprehensive coverage and additional benefits beyond what Original Medicare provides. However, it’s important to carefully consider the costs and benefits of each plan before enrolling. With the information provided in this guide, you should be able to make an informed decision about whether an AARP Medicare Advantage plan is right for you.