As inflation causes us all to stretch our dollars, the majority of Americans — including New Jersey residents — are likely focused on finding the best prices without sacrificing quality. Health care can be expensive, so choosing the right insurance plan that meets your individual or family needs can be essential to maintaining a balanced budget.
Right now – during the annual election period from October 15 to December 7 – people who are eligible for Medicare have the opportunity to select a plan that gives them the affordability, convenience and benefits they want, as well as the quality health care they deserve.
For the 1.6 million New Jersey people who depend on Medicare for their health insurance, I encourage you to make a list of what you need to have in your plan and then think about what else you would like to include.
- Network of doctors and hospitals. If you have specific doctors and hospitals that you prefer, make sure they are in-network for the plan you select.
- More than medical coverage. Determine which benefits are important to you, based on your medical condition and medication needs. Would you like dental, vision and hearing coverage? What about prescription drug coverage?
- Additional benefits. If you need help with transportation to and from doctor’s appointments; allowances to cover dental, vision or hearing costs; access to fitness programs; or services to support your mental health, these are all considerations when selecting a plan. If you want to receive care at home, consider considering a Medicare Advantage plan with providers who can provide care at home, such as Heal that provides primary care, or CenterWell Home Health which provides home care to people with acute or chronic health conditions.
- Prescription drug coverage. Prescription drug coverage is included in many Medicare Advantage plans, but it is not part of Original Medicare. Have a list of your medications handy so you can compare estimated prescription costs when evaluating plan options. Some plans even offer $0 copayments for prescriptions.
Your list will help you determine if Medicare Original or Medicare Advantage best suits your lifestyle.
With all-in-one plans that include dental, vision, hearing and prescription drug coverage in addition to Consumption savings of nearly $2,000 per year compared to what beneficiaries pay in the original MedicareMedicare Advantage plans are growing in popularity every year.
Take the time now to research your options. There are many new Medicare Advantage offers this year, so it’s worth taking the time to evaluate your options to find the best plan for your health care needs — and your wallet.
The Health insurance plan search on Medicare.gov can help compare plans, benefits, and get an estimate of the cost of each plan. For more information, visit www.medicare.gov or call 1-800-MEDICARE (800-633-4227) 24 hours a day, seven days a week (TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048). Additionally, you can learn more about Humana plans, which are recommended by the USAA, by going to www.Humana.com/Medicare or by calling 1-888-372-2614 (TTY: 711) from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week to speak with an authorized sales agent.
Julie Mascari is president of Humana New Jersey Medicare. Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, HMO SNP, PPO, PPO SNP AND PFFS organization with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in any Humana plan is subject to contract renewal.