If you have been considering retirement from your employment, one of the considerations in your budget will be health care costs.
If you are turning 65 years old, you will be eligible for Medicare, a reasonably affordable health coverage plan. Medicare is not free, and there are numerous services that are not covered (vision, dental). Even the covered services are only covered at 80%, after deductibles. You may wish to enhance your coverage with a Medicare Supplement, a Medicare Advantage Plan, a prescription coverage (Part D). Joanne is trained as a SHIBA (State Health Insurance Benefits Advisor) volunteer, and can assist you with your Medicare signup process. Making the wrong choices can cost you for a long time to come.
If you are under 65 years old, you are generally not eligible for Medicare. You may discover, as some folks have, that purchasing health insurance for coverage until you are Medicare eligible will be quite expensive. Even finding subsidized insurance plans through the HealthPlanFinder (HPF) of the Washington State Health Care Authority will still be costly. People have found that basic insurance premiums can run from $ 400-600 per month. Pricing on the HPF varies based on income and age.
Other options for “early retiree” health insurance may be to continue coverage through the former employer (COBRA); through memberships in professional organizations or other groups such as church groups, AARP, etc.
If your income is low enough, you may be eligible for Washington’s Apple Health, at no cost to you. Apple Health and the subsidized health plans can be applied for through the Washington State HPF. Call Joanne for assistance 360-899-5454.
As a friendly reminder, Indian Health Services are not an insurance. By law, they are the payer of last resort.