You have looked forward to retiring for so long, but then the day comes along and things are not as simple as you thought. Medicare is no doubt a great benefit; however, the confusion surrounding it can sometimes be difficult to navigate. If you are looking at the newly released Medicare & You for 2022 handbook and you’re overwhelmed, you are not alone! Here is an explanation of what you need to know to make the task less daunting.
Medicare Comes at a Cost
Medicare was created to help seniors with the high cost of medical services and prescriptions, but it is not free. It is divided into different (and confusing) Parts. Part A is the coverage that will pay for hospital costs, and it is premium-free as long as you or your spouse have paid into the Medicare payroll tax system for at least ten years.
If you haven’t, then you aren’t eligible for premium-free Part A, but you do have the option of paying a monthly premium, which can be costly. Part B is the coverage that pays for outpatient services such as doctor visits (in or out of the hospital), testing, emergency room, outpatient surgery and durable medical equipment, but it is not free. The base premium is $170.10 a month in 2022. This amount can increase each year.
Do You Have a Higher Income? You’ll Pay More…
Making money is a great thing – unless you make too much for Medicare. The more you make, the more you will pay for Part B and Part D. Many Medicare recipients pay the premium standard for Part B. If you have reported a modified adjusted gross income on your tax returns for more than two years, you will be required to pay the standard rate plus an Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amount or IRMAA. It is an additional charge on top of your premium amount.
Starting this year, single filers who exceed $91,000 or married couples who earned $182,000 or higher will pay a premium between $239 to $579 monthly. The same is true regarding Part D. If your income is above the income threshold you will have to pay an extra $12 to $78 dollars per month. We have the links below to the income charts and premiums.
Medicare Part B Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amount:
Medicare Part D Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amount:
Medicare Part D Coverage
Part D is a prescription care plan, and it also comes with a monthly premium – but the cost varies depending on the plan that you sign up for. On average, the national Part D costs about $33 a month. You will also be responsible for a co-payment, out-of-pocket costs, and deductibles.
In 2022, the maximum deductible allowed is $480 annually. The Part D plans can have a lower deductible, but you may pay a higher premium. We never recommend someone purchase a Part D plan based on premium or deductibles. You should base your decision on your total estimated annual out-of-pocket cost for your current medications. We have software that allows us to compare all available plans to determine the plan with the lowest total cost. There is no cost for our annual reviews.
More Help With Insulin Costs
One addition that will likely help a great majority of Medicare recipients is the newly added Part D “enhanced” plan. It is a CMS program that will put a $35 cap per month on the cost of particular insulins. Technically, the program started in 2021, but the number of similar plans is expanding to include more Medicare patients. In 2022, 2,159 Part D plans have included a similar cap. If you are already a beneficiary enrolled in a Medicare Advantage or the original Medicare plan, you can sign up for this program and reap huge benefits.
How to Get Help With Your Medicare Options in 2022
Whether you are already an existing beneficiary member or new to Medicare, we are here to help walk you through the complexities that can be overwhelming. We are a veteran-owned and operated independent insurance broker that represents a vast number of top insurance plans. Once more, there are no fees for our services, so let us help take the guesswork out of choosing the right plan! Our mission is to find the lowest cost plan that will suit all of your needs, click to get started today!