Q:

What are some important steps to getting extra help with Medicare Part B?

A:

Quick Answer

The U.S. government offers Medicare Savings Programs that assist with paying Medicare premiums, including help with Medicare Part B, or medical insurance, according to Medicare.gov. Participants can apply for the savings programs through their state Medicaid programs.

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Full Answer

Medicare Part B recipients who qualify can get assistance from the federal government to pay their premiums if they cannot afford the medical coverage. The savings programs offer help with deductibles, coinsurance and co-payments, as well as Medicare prescription drug coverage costs. Those who are eligible have to meet certain income requirements, which can vary by state. There are four Medicare Savings Programs, two of which pay for Medicare Part B, reports the AARP.

Those who qualify for the federal savings program may also see some relief with penalties they received for signing up late for Medicare Part B. The federal government pays the penalties in addition to the premium, notes the AARP. Those interested in finding out if they qualify for the savings program should call their state Medicaid office. The amount of income required may also be higher in 2016, so those who are unsure if they meet the threshold should still apply. Hawaii and Alaska also have higher income limits allowed to qualify for the savings programs. To keep Medicare costs down, the federal government suggests that participants pay premiums and have valid Medicare cards.

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