Clearing up Medicare confusion while planning for future

Clearing up Medicare confusion while planning for future

(WSFA/NBC) - Even if you are not, maybe your parents or other, older loved ones are approaching an age where some big decisions have to be made about how, when and where they’ll get medical care after retirement.

Everyone pays Medicare tax, but not everyone knows how Medicare works.

"Well, I read an article just recently that said 82 percent of seniors are confused about Medicare,” said John Hill with Gateway Retirement. “I think that is about 18 points short."

Hill said people may be confused and intimidated, but as long as they remember that sign-up occurs three months before or after their 65th birthday, they will be okay.

"You need to be active and not just let things happen because that is how people get penalties," he said.

Hill helps people navigate the Medicare maze and sells the insurance they’ll need, above and beyond basic Medicare. He also offers advice on whether to go with original or Medicare advantage.

"Medicare advantage will change every year,” he said. “They will change their networks, doctors can go in and out of networks if they want to."

What you’re being taxed for now is Medicare A, for hospital stays after age 65. Medicare B is the government insurance you’ll probably need to pay doctors and other providers after retirement.

You can find free assistance programs in every state at this website.

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