If you want to sign up for Medicare, it’s important to become familiar with how it works. There are a lot of moving parts, so having foundational knowledge can empower you to make an informed decision about your health choices. Today we’re covering Medicare Part B and when and how you can become eligible.
Along with Medicare Part A, Medicare Part B makes up Original Medicare. It covers medical services and medically necessary supplies to treat your health conditions. This can include ambulance services, preventive care, outpatient care, and durable medical equipment. It can even cover part-time rehabilitative services such as physical therapy or home care if a doctor orders them to treat a medical condition.
There’s a monthly premium for Medicare Part B, and there may be co-payments and deductibles when you get care. The monthly premium may change from one year to the next and vary depending on your financial situation.
Though most people are eligible for Part B when they turn 65, special circumstances might allow you to enroll in Medicare before your 65th birthday. These are the eligibility requirements for Medicare Part B:
65 years old
To qualify for Medicare Part B, you must be at least 65 years old. You must also be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident lawfully residing in the United States for at least five continuous years. You’re automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B if you’ve received Railroad Retirement Benefits or Social Security Benefits for at least four months before your 65th birthday.
People not automatically enrolled on their 65th birthday can sign up during the Initial Enrollment Period, General Enrollment Period, and Special EnrollmentPeriod.
Click here to learn more about these enrollment periods.
If you have a disability and are receiving Social Security or Railroad Retirement Board disability payments, you can enroll in Medicare Part B even if you aren’t 65 years old. Qualifying disabilities may include:
- Mental disorders
- Neurological disorders
- Cardiovascular and blood disorders
- Digestive system disorders
- Sensory disorders
ESRD or ALS
People who’ve been diagnosed with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are eligible for Part B, even if they aren’t 65.
If you’re thinking about enrolling in Medicare Part B because you’re close to your 65th birthday or think you might meet the criteria to sign up before then, it’s important to connect with an experienced team who can help you navigate your available options. Contact the Guided team today to learn more.