If you are deemed legally disabled and are being paid monthly by Social Security, the United States Government will provide you with medical health insurance. The Social Security Administration, specifically states that you will receive Medicare after you have been on disability for 24 months. Medicare can help you with prescription drug purchases, hospitalization and much more.
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Having proper health care is essential if you are disabled because you will require consistent medical assistance and that can be costly. You should never be placed in a position where you cannot afford to be treated because of inadequate health care, and thanks to Medicare, you don’t have to.
What is Medicare?
Medicare is a government funded health care program that is primarily available to senior citizens over 65 and people who are legally disabled. Medicareensures payment of pre-approved services like surgery (related to the disability), routine office appointments, prescriptions and more.
Medicare closely resembles the PPO insurance plans that most employers provide because the financial obligations are divided the same; Medicare pays 80% of the costs and you are responsible for the remaining 20%. This is a huge help to people on disability because finances are usually affected in a negative way and medical bills can start to pile up.
Whether your disability is congenital or due to other circumstances, you need to understand your health insuranceoptions. Having proper coverage helps you manage your budget effectively while you receive the medical assistance you require.
How do I know if I qualify for Medicare?
The first requirement is you must be receiving Social Security benefits for a minimum of 24 months. After about 18 months of consecutive payments from Social Security, you will start receiving information about Medicare. Make sure you read the information thoroughly so you understand everything completely.
You will need to complete the application process and submit all medical documentation as requested. It is very important that they have a record of the type of disability you have so they can gauge what kind of medical assistance you may require.
Acceptance is contingent upon the information they receive, but in all likelihood, you will be granted coverage because you are already receiving Social Security benefits. In rare cases when a Medicare application is denied, you should follow the appeals process. If this happens, you should be prepared for a long wait.
What happens if I get married? Does Medicare cover my husband or my children?
Unfortunately, you cannot use Medicare like traditional health insurance. If you get married, your spouse must either qualify for his own Medicare insurance coverage or utilize other resources. If your spouse is employed, he is likely to have insurance through his job. Older couples, over age 65 must apply for Medicare separately. You cannot combine your policies simply because you are both eligible.
If you become pregnant, your pre-natal care may be covered because it involves you directly. Since you are already insured through Medicare, there should be no problem with you receiving care from an OB/GYN as well as your primary care physician. Medicare may approve all services including delivery costs. Just make sure you research any stipulations.
Once your child is born, you will need to purchase an individual health insurance policy to cover immunizations and regular office visits. While rare, single policies are issued on newborn children if the parent has special circumstances, like being disabled. There is a common myth if you have children they are automatically covered by Medicare. The reality is Medicare will not cover your child simply because you are insured.
There are alternatives to private insurance. If your income level meets the criteria, there may be other options you can exercise. Call Social Security and ask for a contact list of local and state resources that may help you locate low-income health insurance programs.
Having a disability can be very challenging and quite stressful at times; you don’t want to add to your anxiety unnecessarily. During those days when you are feeling less than stellar and require medical attention, you should have the ability to do so without feeling a financial crunch.
Medicare is an extremely effective way to manage health care for those who are disabled. While Medicare may have downsides and differ from the type of health insurance that is offered to the masses, the plan is a winner.
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