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Medicare Myths and Facts

Updated: Apr 25, 2023

Let’s start with some Medicare Basics…..are they Myths, or Facts?

Senior Female at desk with laptop and notes

Medicare is Free – MYTH

If you have paid into your part A the last 40 quarters, you do not have a premium for part A but, you will have a monthly premium for your Medicare Part B which is a minimum of $170.10 per month for 2022.

When you turn 65 you must take your Medicare – MYTH

As long as you have viable insurance, such as employer’s insurance, you do not have to apply for your Medicare until you know you are going to retire or lose the insurance. You can apply for just your Medicare Part A when you turn 65 because that has no premium and it is strictly hospital coverage.

You do not have to apply for Medicare – MYTH and FACT

If you are currently receiving Social Security benefits, your Medicare will automatically start the month you turn 65 (or the month before if your birthday is on the first of the month). If you are NOT receiving any benefits, then you will need to apply for your Medicare by either calling Social Security and getting it started or going online to

What if I can not afford the $170.10 per month for my Medicare Part B? Do I have to take it? – FACT

No, you can opt out of your Medicare Part B, but please be aware that you will be penalized for not having your Medicare Part B coverage. It is 10% for each 12-month period you have not had your Medicare Part B when you were first eligible, or approximately $17.10 per year extra for your Medicare Part B premium.

Do I have to have a prescription drug plan? Even if I don’t take any prescriptions. – FACT

You do not have to have a Prescription drug plan, but again, you will be penalized 1% for each month you have not had coverage for prescriptions. It is based off of the “National Base Beneficiary premium” or $33.37 per month for 2022. So, each month your premium for a Medicare Part D Plan will go up .33 per month.

Medicare A and B will pay all of my expenses for my health – MYTH

There is a $233 Deductible for Medicare Part B as well as 20% co-insurance that will be billed to you. It does not matter what the amount is, you will be responsible for 20% of that bill. Medicare Part A has a $1,556.00 deductible for each benefit period. A benefit period begins the day you go into a hospital or skilled nursing facility and ends when you have been out for 60 days in a row. If you go back into the hospital after 60 days, then a new benefit period starts, and the deductible happens again.

You can get Medicare before you turn 65 – FACT

Yes, if you are on Social Security Disability, you will start receiving your Medicare benefits on the 25th month after your SSDI starts.

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