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Author: WPatch Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 19026  
Subject: drop med b Date: 11/15/2011 11:08 PM
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Been retired and on Medicare since 1988. If I drop Medicare b would MDs charge Medicare rates or must I wait till 65
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Author: stockmover Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17417 of 19026
Subject: Re: drop med b Date: 11/16/2011 2:10 AM
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If I drop Medicare b would MDs charge Medicare rates or must I wait till 65

I am not sure but my best guess would be No. What I don't understand is why you want to drop Part B coverage now and then try to enroll in B when you are 65 ?

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Author: WPatch Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17418 of 19026
Subject: Re: drop med b Date: 11/16/2011 6:00 AM
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No. I am sure I don't want it at age 65. I just don't know if health suppliers must charge medicare rates to Medicare A holders. They must give medicare rates to all over 65

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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: 17419 of 19026
Subject: Re: drop med b Date: 11/16/2011 7:54 AM
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Assume the Rack Rate for an office visit is say $180 (actual rate for my Primary Care Physician). If you walk off the street with no insurance you will get charged $180. Your insurance company (and Medicare is that) can and always does negotiate a cost lower than the Rack Rate. You are not entitled to the Rack Rate of insurance company X, unless you have a policy with insurance company X.

So if you get medical treatment on one of the hundreds of physicians in the medical group I use, will not get the Medicare rates.

Gordon
Atlanta

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Author: billjam Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17420 of 19026
Subject: Re: drop med b Date: 11/16/2011 4:13 PM
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To add to what Gordon said, if you don't pay Part B premium, why should you get the lower physician's rate? Does Costco let you come in and buy at member prices if you don't pay for a membership?

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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17425 of 19026
Subject: Re: drop med b Date: 11/21/2011 11:31 AM
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Does Costco let you come in and buy at member prices if you don't pay for a membership?

Actually, yes. You can go with a friend/relative who can use their card for your purchases. Nothing sneaky about it, it's permitted, or used to be.

if you don't pay Part B premium, why should you get the lower physician's rate?

You can offer to pay cash at time of service saving them the hassle and wait for payment they have with insurers, including Medicare. My mom has no dental insurance and gets a 10% discount for cleanings/exams and I think 25% off more complex procedures. People I know without health insurance negotiate with health care providers and get substantial discounts, probably as good as insurance/Medicare in many instances, but it doesn't work with every provider.

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Author: billjam Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17426 of 19026
Subject: Re: drop med b Date: 11/21/2011 12:38 PM
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You can offer to pay cash at time of service saving them the hassle and wait for payment they have with insurers, including Medicare. My mom has no dental insurance and gets a 10% discount for cleanings/exams and I think 25% off more complex procedures. People I know without health insurance negotiate with health care providers and get substantial discounts, probably as good as insurance/Medicare in many instances, but it doesn't work with every provider.

You certainly have the right to trying negotiating, but OP thought physicians ought to only charge Medicare rates just because he was 65. It doesn't work that way. If you aren't enrolled in Medicare, they can charge you whatever they want. In fact, even if you are enrolled they can charge more if they choose to not accept Medicare. One surgeon in our town tried that for a while. Soon found he didn't have much business and began accepting Medicare again.

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