Notes Inside Medicare - Important Knowledge for Everyone:
Recently the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services/Office of Enterprise Data & Analytics/Office of the Actuary noted that there were $377.0 Billion in Program Payments for 34.8 million persons served in Medicare for 2017. Additionally it was noted that there are now approximatley 61.2 million individuals enrolled in Medicare Parts A & B in 2019.
Wow! Those numbers are stunning and leads us to a point where we need to understand how important Medicare is to so many individuals.
Is Medicare Complicated?
Yep...seems to be that way for sure. Medicare involves our trying to understand the language or words that are used in describing all the things we need to know. For example, what does the word "covered" mean? If we were told a surgery is "covered" by Medicare, many would think the costs would be taken care of. Well in reality, we have to be careful because that is not necessarily the case in Medicare. We have to realize that Medicare, since roughly 1965, was never a benefit program that paid all medical costs. Depending upon the benefit being considered, Medicare will pay some part of the cost but not necessarly all of the cost.
The important point is we must be very careful to understand the language or words used in the Medicare Program. I'm not bringing this up to alarm anyone. Medicare pays a lot of medical costs as we can read in the information published by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
When you review information about Medicare, take time to review definitions that may be provided in the materials or documents that you have. Ask questions if you don't understand. Agents have a resposibility to communicate so you understand what you are doing and attempting to make good informed decisions regarding your Health Care Plans and Coverages.
Medicare is a highly regulated environment for Insurance Companies and Agents to work in. Guidelines have been put in place to protect Medicare Beneficiaries. Summary of Benefits and Certificates/Evidence of Coverage Documents are available for your review. Documents like these can provide various "definitions" that you need when you make important decisions. You should never make a purchasing desision without an Agent providing these types of documents, so you can review them to obtain an adequate understanding, before your ever enroll in any type of healthcare plan.