Healthcare Reform for the Medicare Eligible

Politcal cartoon diagramming Medicare reform confusion

Recently I’ve been peppered with questions from across Southern California—from Anaheim to San Diego, San Bernardino to Long Beach—regarding healthcare reform and what impact it will have on those covered by Medicare.  Many California seniors are understandably in the dark about how the new health insurance law affects them.  Let me try to set the record straight.

First off, if you’re currently receiving individual health insurance in California and are Medicare eligible, your coverage will remain intact.  During open enrollment, seniors still have a choice between Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage health insurance plans. But there are some new health insurance benefits that all seniors should know about. Patients who receive Medicare prescription drug coverage and reach their coverage gap, usually referred to as the “donut hole,” can receive a discount when buying Part D-covered brand-name prescription drugs. In addition, those who receive individual health insurance may receive a 7 percent (7%) discount on generic prescriptions filled during the coverage gap.

Another plus? Those individuals who are enrolled in both Medicare and Medicaid, referred to as “dual-eligible,” can take advantage of the new Federal Coordinated Health Care office contained within the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. It is meant to provide improved seniors insurance assistance for recipients who are on a fixed income, frail or elderly.

These are just a fraction of the changes coming down the pipeline as a result of national healthcare reform. Whether you are on a small business group insurance plan or an individual health insurance plan, you need to stay educated about how healthcare reform will affect you and your premiums. The need for licensed professionals will only increase as the new healthcare reform law is fully implemented and the compliance demands on employers and individuals increase. To learn more healthcare reform and Medicare, call George Geldin at (818) 889-5831.

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