Medicare

Old Feb 23rd 2012, 10:52 pm
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Default Medicare

My wife and I are in our 70's and 15 months ago arrived in the USA to live with our son and his family.

We have been granted permanent resident status, but having made enquiries relating to Medicare Parts A and B we have been informed that in order to qualify, we have to have a minimum requirement of 5 years residency. We were told that we will receive a letter informing us of our options, but in the meantime we would appreciate observations from anyone else who might have experienced the same problem.

We realize that we have not contributed into Medicare and will need to make regular payments into the fund when the necessary residential qualification has been met.

Last edited by Sue; Feb 24th 2012 at 12:43 pm. Reason: Moved to USA forum
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Old Feb 23rd 2012, 11:04 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Welcome to BE!

This is just a spot to introduce yourselves.

You'll want to post in the US forums - http://britishexpats.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=57

Though have a search first as this subject has come up, a lot.

The options really aren't great, for most it is a case of either getting a job or leaving the US because at 70+ you are pretty much un-insurable on a private, personal policy and even if you found one that wasn't going to be in the thousands a month, it'll be worth as much as toilet paper if you needed to make a claim as they'll just drop you.

Some states might offer you the chance of getting in on high risk pool, but again they are often limited to exclude new immigrants.
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 3:32 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Originally Posted by marisr View Post
My wife and I are in our 70's and 15 months ago arrived in the USA to live with our son and his family.

We have been granted permanent resident status, but having made enquiries relating to Medicare Parts A and B we have been informed that in order to qualify, we have to have a minimum requirement of 5 years residency. We were told that we will receive a letter informing us of our options, but in the meantime we would appreciate observations from anyone else who might have experienced the same problem.

We realize that we have not contributed into Medicare and will need to make regular payments into the fund when the necessary residential qualification has been met.
Hate to be negative, but it truly baffles me that people move to the US in later life and then discover that they may be up shit creek as far as health care is concerned. Imo, this is just about the most important issue to be addressed before one commits to moving to the US.
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 4:51 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Originally Posted by marisr View Post
My wife and I are in our 70's and 15 months ago arrived in the USA to live with our son and his family.

We have been granted permanent resident status, but having made enquiries relating to Medicare Parts A and B we have been informed that in order to qualify, we have to have a minimum requirement of 5 years residency. We were told that we will receive a letter informing us of our options, but in the meantime we would appreciate observations from anyone else who might have experienced the same problem.

We realize that we have not contributed into Medicare and will need to make regular payments into the fund when the necessary residential qualification has been met.
Quite correct. You need to have 5 years residency before qualifying for Medicare.

Even when you qualify, because you have not paid into Medicare you will need to pay for Part A in addition to Part B,C, and D.

Currently Part A alone is running at $450.00 per month
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 5:05 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Originally Posted by SanDiegogirl View Post
Quite correct. You need to have 5 years residency before qualifying for Medicare.

Even when you qualify, because you have not paid into Medicare you will need to pay for Part A in addition to Part B,C, and D.

Currently Part A alone is running at $450.00 per month
Interesting, I didn't know that people who were not qualified could actually pay for Part A.

So if someone pays $450 for part A, do they get Part B for the same price as a qualified person like me ($99.90 currently I believe.) Because if so, then once a foreigner manages to live here for five years and survives, then it seems to me they have reasonably-priced health insurance.. I realise there is Part D, copays, medigap insurance etc. still to pay, but it should be manageable for someone with a good retirement income.
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 5:56 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Originally Posted by robin1234 View Post
Interesting, I didn't know that people who were not qualified could actually pay for Part A.

So if someone pays $450 for part A, do they get Part B for the same price as a qualified person like me ($99.90 currently I believe.) Because if so, then once a foreigner manages to live here for five years and survives, then it seems to me they have reasonably-priced health insurance.. I realise there is Part D, copays, medigap insurance etc. still to pay, but it should be manageable for someone with a good retirement income.

The Medicare brochures all state that if you have not paid into Medicare you MAY be eligible to pay into the scheme. What that MAY means,apart from the residency requirement, is anyone's guess. There are penalties imposed if you don't take on Medicare at the usual age of 65 so presumably these would be applied for those applying at a later stage, plus any other 'requirements' the legislation might wish to impose.

With regard your statement "it should be manageable for someone with a good retirement income" yes, they would pay the $450 for Part A, plus Part B, plus C (advantage plans) or a Medigap plan, plus part D.

Part B is means tested and you pay more than the base rate of $99 based on your income.

Hubby is turning 65 this year and his Medicare costs, taking into account that he does not pay for Part A, having paid his dues, will come to $434 a month. If he had to pay for Part A that would be nearly $900 a month.

Quite a chunk of change.
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 6:06 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Originally Posted by SanDiegogirl View Post
...
Part B is means tested and you pay more than the base rate of $99 based on your income.
...
Well, you only have to pay more than $99.90 for part B if your income exceeds $85,000 for individuals or $170,000 for married couples. So most folks are safe on that score..
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 6:33 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Originally Posted by robin1234 View Post
Well, you only have to pay more than $99.90 for part B if your income exceeds $85,000 for individuals or $170,000 for married couples. So most folks are safe on that score..
Agreed, but if as a new immigrant you have to pay for Part A as well, you are already talking about $550 a month per person before you even start thinking about Part C, Part D plus deductibles, co-pays.

Unfortunately some people don't understand how much Medicare can cost them - as the post from the OP shows.
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 6:46 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Has the OP looked into private healthcare, or signing on for a community hospital scheme?
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 7:26 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Originally Posted by Giantaxe View Post
Hate to be negative, but it truly baffles me that people move to the US in later life and then discover that they may be up shit creek as far as health care is concerned. Imo, this is just about the most important issue to be addressed before one commits to moving to the US.
+1
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 7:51 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Originally Posted by robin1234 View Post
Interesting, I didn't know that people who were not qualified could actually pay for Part A.

So if someone pays $450 for part A, do they get Part B for the same price as a qualified person like me ($99.90 currently I believe.) Because if so, then once a foreigner manages to live here for five years and survives, then it seems to me they have reasonably-priced health insurance.. I realise there is Part D, copays, medigap insurance etc. still to pay, but it should be manageable for someone with a good retirement income.
I have never paid into medicare, but I will get it when I'm 65. Fortunately I qualify for the free part A being married to someone who has paid. But as a now US citizen I would qualify anyway for paid part A, and yes it is cheaper than my current health insurance, and manageable if necessary on my pension.

The major consideration before we moved over was could we finance private health insurance until medicare kicked in, and then pay for medicare if necessary.
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 7:53 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Originally Posted by marisr View Post
My wife and I are in our 70's and 15 months ago arrived in the USA to live with our son and his family.

We have been granted permanent resident status, but having made enquiries relating to Medicare Parts A and B we have been informed that in order to qualify, we have to have a minimum requirement of 5 years residency. We were told that we will receive a letter informing us of our options, but in the meantime we would appreciate observations from anyone else who might have experienced the same problem.

We realize that we have not contributed into Medicare and will need to make regular payments into the fund when the necessary residential qualification has been met.
What State do you live in, and have you checked to see if the State runs its own high risk medical insurance pool?
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 8:27 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Originally Posted by SanDiegogirl View Post
There are penalties imposed if you don't take on Medicare at the usual age of 65 so presumably these would be applied for those applying at a later stage, plus any other 'requirements' the legislation might wish to impose.
I read it as there are penalties involved if you don't take it when you first become eligible, which for most people would be 65 but not all, for someone who wasn't eligible at 65 it would seem a little harsh to penalize them.
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 10:05 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

Many thanks for the response to my Medicare enquiry which shows that the BE community in the USA is alive and kicking.

My initial enquiry for parts A and B indicated that it would cost $451 per month for part A and $99.90 per month for part B, so it seems to fall in line with the information offered by the majority of other contributors to this forum.

I am currently living in California and will certainly look into the possibility of the State running it's own high risk medical insurance scheme as suggested by Iansbury. However, I am still awaiting to hear from Social Security outlining my options before pursuing the matter further.

Please keep the discussion going.
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Old Feb 24th 2012, 11:11 pm
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Default Re: Medicare

New member here. Very interesting discusion. My Mother in Law (70) has decided to immigrate, and we are looking at these as well as private insurance options as well.
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