Medicare costs can add up. In addition to out-of-pocket costs like deductibles and coinsurance, there are also Medicare premiums that must be paid to maintain coverage.
In this guide, we detail several ways that you can get help paying Medicare premiums, and we detail the 2019 Medicare premiums you can expect to pay.
Medicare Extra Help, also known as the Medicare Part D Low-Income Subsidy, is a federal program that can help with Medicare Part D prescription drug plan premiums.
Your home, a car, a burial plot, furniture and other household items do not count as applicable financial resources.
Medicare Savings Programs can help beneficiaries cover the cost of premiums for Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) and Part B (medical insurance). Medicare Savings Programs can also help with paying Medicare deductibles, coinsurance and copayments.
There are four Medicare Savings Programs:
This program helps pay for Medicare Part A and Part B premiums. If you qualify for this program, you automatically qualify for Medicare Extra Help.
You may qualify for the QMB if your 2018 income and resources meet the following limits:
If you earn just a little too much to qualify for the QMB program, you may qualify for the Specified Low-Income Medicare Beneficiary program. This program helps pay Medicare Part B premiums and qualifies you for Medicare Extra Help.
You may qualify for the SLMB if your 2018 income and resources meet the following limits:
Those who do not qualify for either the QMB or SLMB programs may still be eligible for the Qualifying Individual Program, which pays for Medicare Part B premiums and qualifies you for Medicare Extra Help.
You must apply for QI benefits every year, and applications are reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis. You can’t get QI benefits if you qualify for Medicaid.
You may qualify for QI benefits if your 2018 income and resources meet the following limits:
Qualified Disabled and Working Individuals Program (QDWI)
This program is a little different than the others in that it only pays for Medicare Part A premiums. You may qualify for QDWI benefits if any of the following apply:
To qualify for QDWI benefits, your 2018 income and resources must also meet the following limits:
2019 Medicare premiums are as follows:
There are even more ways to save money on your Medicare costs, including joining a Medicare Advantage plan that may offer the benefits you need at a price you can afford.
To compare Medicare Advantage plans available in your area, speak with a licensed insurance agent by calling TTY Users: 711, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
1 CMS. Medicare Advantage premiums continue to decline while plan choices and benefits increase in 2019. (Sep. 28, 2018). Retrieved from www.cms.gov/newsroom/press-releases/medicare-advantage-premiums-continue-decline-while-plan-choices-and-benefits-increase-2019.
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