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Author: nelbie00 Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 19380  
Subject: Don't Want Medicare Date: 2/1/2000 5:35 PM
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I will soon retire at 65 and begin to draw my social security. Because of my friends experiences with Medicare, I would like to purchase healthcare insurance thru my membership in a private organization.

Assuming I have the resources, can I do this?

If the need arises, may I enroll in medicare at a later date?

Has anyone out there adopted a similar strategy?

Thank You!
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Author: TMFPixy Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1908 of 19380
Subject: Re: Don't Want Medicare Date: 2/2/2000 9:11 AM
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Greetings, Nelbie00, and welcome. You wrote:

<<I will soon retire at 65 and begin to draw my social security. Because of my friends experiences with Medicare, I would like to purchase healthcare insurance thru my membership in a private organization.

Assuming I have the resources, can I do this?

If the need arises, may I enroll in medicare at a later date?

Has anyone out there adopted a similar strategy?>>


Medicare has two parts, Part A and Part B. Part A covers hospitalization and has no premium. You paid those premiums while working. Part B covers visits to the doctor and supplementary medical procedures not covered by Part A. You are automatically enrolled in Medicare when you apply for Social Security, but you may opt out of Part B is you ask. The premium for Part B is $45.50 per month in 2000, which covers about one-fourth of the costs to the government. Said another way, the government pays 3/4 of the cost of the services paid under Part B. If you turn it down at the time you apply for Social Security, then you will be assessed a 10% increase in cost for later enrollment for any 12-month period you could have enrolled, but didn't.

Can you find coverage for these services? Probably, at least for Part B. However, the cost would be prohibitive, will not be guaranteed to continue for life, and will escalate obscenely each and every year you hold it. All in all, IMHO it would be exceedingly (f)oolish (as opposed to Foolish) for you to decline this coverage despite its flaws. It is in the only safety net for medical care you have in your retired years.

Regards..Pixy

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Author: TwoCybers Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1934 of 19380
Subject: Re: Don't Want Medicare Date: 2/2/2000 5:14 PM
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There is another "issue" Pixy did not mention. If you fail to take out insurance for part now, you probably will not be able to do so at a later date. There may not be a legal basis for this, but such is life.

There are many individuals who took out a type B plan (HMOs are the specific ones I am talking about) and some years later the Plan B coverages were changed. These people now can not go back and change from the HMO to another type B insurance.

I would suggest you think long and hard. Insurance you don't like is better then no insurance and no money.

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Author: DoktorDi Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1935 of 19380
Subject: Re: Don't Want Medicare Date: 2/2/2000 5:30 PM
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<<There are many individuals who took out a type B plan (HMOs are the specific ones I am talking about) and some years later the Plan B coverages were changed. These people now can not go back and change from the HMO to another type B insurance.>>

I think there may be some exceptions. My retirement benefits allow me to choose between the same three plans I had access to while employed, prorated to my years of service. I was in an excellent (and cheap) HMO preretirement and stayed with that for my postretirement. Unless the benefits change (and sure, they could), I could elect (at a price) to switch to the higher priced commercial insurance.

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