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Subject:  Re: Medicare: $480 bill, choosing new plan Date:  11/5/2012  4:09 PM
Author:  lcd186 Number:  18052 of 19817

Sounds like you might have received a bill for a medigap policy or a Medicare Advantage plan. I too am on SSD at age 62 due to heart issues. I pay $99/month for Part A, then about $350/month for medigap (medigap is much higher for those on Medicare due to SSD), and about $40/month for Part D drug coverage. If I were you, I would call you state SHIIP office and ask what's going on. They probably will be able to explain the situation, fraud or whatever. Good luck.

ResNullius, I forgot to mention that I am calling from New York City. Even though there is a SHIIP (Senior Health Insurance Information Program) for the entire state, when we in NYC calls that number, we are routed automatically to local NYC, or 311. Unfortunately in the aftermath of Sandy, most all telephone calls to any city agency is swamped. I am going to wait until the end of the week, or next week (or beyond) to try getting through.

On the rest of your response, it all sounds reasonable except I don't know why I am getting this bill suddenly almost at the end of the plan year, essentially making this bill retroactive to the beginning of the year.

Also I've been paying (like you) $99.90/month via auto deduction out of my SSD check. I've not been billed $350/month yet for medigap. When I called moments ago, the awkward young customer service representative told me this was for "plan B" (emphasis on "B" and not "D"). It would have been more sensible to me if it was for "D."

Call them and ask. If you can't handle making that call, have someone make it for you.

Phil, I did. the phone number I have listed to Member Services is 1-866-395-5175. I called it a total of three times to be on the safe side. The very first two calls were greeted with this interesting robo greeting.

"Hello. Thank you for calling! Please listen carefully as the menu options may have changed. Congratulations! Just for calling in today, you’re going to the Bahamas on a complimentary two-night Bahamas cruise. Wow, this really is exciting! Your complimentary two-night cruise will include unlimited dining in the ship’s four spectacular restaurants, use of our luxurious on-board spa and health club, as well as access to one of the largest casinos on any cruise ship. Your only responsibility is nominal port fees of $59 per person payable to you