CowFish wrote:How do you know these things if you don't have a Medicare Advantage Plan?
I switched my mother to an Advantage Plan. It's saving her a lot of money. Of course, I had enough sense to check that all of her doctors were in the network. She has many health problems.
Maybe you have been talking to people who are too dumb to do this before signing up?
I have a Medicare Advantage plan...and glad to have it. Switched my mom to one 3 or 4 years ago. She hasn't given up a thing.
All her doctors and her preferred hospital accept the plan and the savings on her part D coverage for medications alone made it a good business deal. Her primary doctor visits have a copay of either nothing or $10..it bounces around each year.
Now specialist co pay is a bit higher but she rarely is in need of a specialist.
When I broke my wrist a few years back and required surgery to fix it...my total out of pocket was just a little over $700 for everything from the ER visit to the last post op following up. At the time my Advantage plan didn't cost me a dime and now it is $29 a month (and this covers medications too).
Yeah, if I go to the hospital and end up admitted I have some daily co pays that could bite me in the butt but I am generally healthy without any problems that might cause me to end up in the hospital. The money saved by using the Medicare Advantage plan over the years will more than cover any out of pocket I have had that I wouldn't have had if I had traditional Medicare and a Part B supplement.
I haven't had to settle for sub par medical coverage or had anything disallowed except for one blood test and I got billed a grand total of $19 for it. I could have fought it because it was billed out under the wrong code but it wasn't worth fighting about. That was a billing error and not related to my coverage anyway.
People should look closely at the various Medicare Advantage plans out there so they know exactly what is or isn't covered and what their copay might be in various situations so that there aren't any ugly surprises but it's not hard to do.
Then they make a choice...either pay now for sure with a Part B supplement or maybe pay later. I opt to maybe pay later.
For the most part Medicare Advantage plans are tied to what Medicare would allow and pay for. If traditional Medicare would disallow it then the Advantage plan is likely to disallow it.
In terms of cpap stuff...I pay 20% of the Medicare allowed amount (and I have checked with regular Medicare for what the allowed amounts are for my mask and it matches to the penny) so twice a year I get a new mask and pay out of pocket in the neighborhood of $29. I am a happy camper.
For me to get a traditional Medicare supplement for Part B stuff...the cost would be enormous since I have Medicare due to a early disability and only turn 65 this year. People like me....if we can find a traditional supplement that will cover you us the monthly premium is pushing 300 a month. I can pay a lot of little co pays for $3600 a year.
Heck I saved money just with the broken wrist out of pocket.
Medicare Advantage plans aren't crap. They are different though and people need to fully understand how they work and why the lower (or free) monthly premiums.
ChunkyFrog's comments....simply not true and I don't know where she gets these ideas.