www.OnlineSupplementalPlans.com

What You Need to Know About Insurance!


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Act now: Just 4 days left!

The clock is ticking down for individuals looking to enroll in health insurance!

If you want health insurance starting on January 1, you will need to complete  your application and enroll in the next 4 days.

All plans cover preventive health benefits like vaccines, screenings, and check-ups. Don’t delay and  risk not having coverage or a lapse in coverage in the New Year.

We will help you find quality coverage that fits your budget. Last year, 80% of people who applied received assistance to help with costs. Let’s get you enrolled so that you may join them for 2015.

Deadline: Enroll by December 15 so you have coverage on January 1.

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The New York City Blackout: 10 Years Later

Where were you when this happened?

kanani mahelona

blackout-satellite

Today is the 10-year anniversary of the great blackout of 2003, which affected much of the Northeast, most notably New York City.  I was living in Dallas at the time and on a business trip to Hartford, CT.  As luck (or lack of it) would have it, I would end up making a last-minute trip down to New York City on that fateful day – and have one of the most surreal experiences of my life.  Here’s a light-hearted account of it all, recounted from an email I sent to friends and family a few days after returning home from the ordeal:

Thursday, August 14:

Ralph hears about the blackout in New York on the news while at work in Dallas. He thinks to himself, “Wow…thank GOD Kanani’s not in Manhattan!”

Minutes later, he receives the call from me. “Hey…guess what..I had to make an emergency trip to Manhattan today for…

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Medicare Supplemental Insurance

Medigap Supplemental Plans

If you’re concerned about Medicare costs, a Medigap health insurance policy (also called Medigap supplemental insurance or a Medicare supplemental plan) helps pay the “gap” between what Original Medicare (Medicare Parts A and B) pays and what you pay out of your own pocket. You can get a Medicare Supplement policy through private insurance companies.

What you should know about Medigap

The Medigap policy you purchase must be clearly identified as “Medicare Supplement Insurance.” There are 10 different Medigap coverage options to choose from. Plans are labeled A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N (Plans E, H, I, and J are no longer available).

plan_comparison_chart

You can get a Medicare Supplement Plan only if you already have Original Medicare. Medigap covers Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) and Medicare Part B (medical insurance), but it does not cover Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage plans), Medicare Part D (prescription drug plans), or any other private health insurance, Medicaid, Veterans’ Administration benefits, or TRICARE.

Because Medigap policies are regulated by state and Federal laws, the benefits for all the coverage options are the same regardless of insurer. The differences will be in the price, who administers the plan, and which of the 10 options the insurer chooses to offer. Choose a health insurer you trust, and shop around for the best prices.

Residents of Massachusetts, Minnesota, or Wisconsin also have the option to buy a Medicare SELECT policy. If you choose this type of Medicare Supplement Plan, then you will have to use a specific network of doctors and hospitals.

Open enrollment for Medicare Supplement Plans

Your open enrollment for Medigap supplemental insurance begins the first day of the month in which you turn 65 and are covered under Medicare Part B. You have six months to enroll. If you are under 65, check with your state’s Social Security Administration to see if it offers additional open enrollment periods.

As long as you enroll during this six-month open enrollment period, the insurance company cannot refuse to sell you a Medigap policy, charge you more because you have health problems, or make you wait for coverage to begin. However, you may have to wait up to six months for coverage of a pre-existing condition. Original Medicare will still cover that health problem even if your Medicare Supplement Plan doesn’t cover your out-of-pocket costs.

If you enroll in a Medicare Supplement Plan outside of your open enrollment period, the private insurance company may “underwrite” the plan. That means you may be subject to a physical, and the insurance company can refuse to sell you the plan or they can adjust your premium based on your health status.

If you enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, you are not allowed to use and can’t be sold a Medigap policy. However, if you later return to Original Medicare, Parts A and B, you have a 12-month special enrollment period to sign up for a Medigap Supplement Plan.
How insurance companies set Medigap premiums

There are three ways an insurance company can set Medigap premium rates:

“Community-rated” (or “no-age-rated”) premiums are the same for everyone, regardless of age.

“Issue-age-rated” (or “entry-age-rated”) premiums are based on your age when you first buy the policy. The sooner you enroll, the less you will pay.

“Attained-age-rated” premiums are based on your current age, meaning it goes up as you grow older.

Other factors impacting the premium rates can include inflation, geography, medical underwriting (if you did not enroll when first eligible), and other discounts. You should check with each specific health insurer to see how it sets Medigap prices before you buy.

Medicare has neither reviewed nor endorsed this information.


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Ebola & The Media- Are they going too far? Read to See 6 Other Infectious Diseases That Pose You More Threat

Care Transitions LLP

Just like the Bird Flu, Swine Flu, Entirovirus 68, H1N1, SARS, Ebola has now risen for its 15 minutes of notoriety, unfortunately claiming the lives of thousands of people over in Sierra Leone and Liberia. Ebola is now threatening to make it’s way to the US.

My phone is constantly sending me CNN and New York Times updates on the latest development of Ebola. “BREAKING NEWS” is the headline that cried wolf, or is it? Is the media blowing Ebola out of proportion? Is it really a concern more so then the flu or cold? The symptoms (please take the time to look them up) are very similar to the Flu or Cold. The media has come out to say to the General Public, please do not lie about your symptoms. I think lying isn’t a concern as much as lack of symptom awareness as well as confusion. Is it…

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When’s the best time to buy a Medigap policy?

The best time to buy a Medigap policy is during your Medigap Open Enrollment Period. This period lasts for 6 months and begins on the first day of the month in which you’re both 65 or older and enrolled in Medicare Part B. Some states have additional Open Enrollment Periods including those for people under 65. During this period, an insurance company can’t use medical underwriting. This means the insurance company can’t do any of these because of your health problems:

    • Refuse to sell you any Medigap policy it offers

    • Charge you more for a Medigap policy than they charge someone with no health problems

    • Make you wait for coverage to start (except as explained below)