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New York Health Insurance for Seniors

Aug 9th, 2011

New York health insurance

If you are a senior where do you turn to for a New York health insurance coverage?
Senior citizens – those aged 65 and older usually get their health insurance from Medicare. Medicare is a federal health insurance program that provides medical and insurance coverage to citizens who are at least 65 years old.

There is no income limit to be in this program. Aside from the age requirement, the only other requirement is residency. They should be a US resident for at least 5 years and they or their spouse must have been paying Medicare tax for at least 10 years.  Membership is extended to those under 65 years old only if they have a disability.

The government through Medicare pays 80% of each member’s health and insurance cost. Seniors must start applying for Medicare three months before their 65th birthday to ensure that their coverage starts as soon as they turn 65.

Medicare has 4 parts : Part A which is hospital insurance, Part B which is medical insurance, Part C which is Medicare Advantage and Part D which is for prescription coverage.

Part A gives coverage for hospital stay including room and board, doctor’s fees and tests during the time of confinement. It will also cover stay in a skilled nursing facility preceding a 3-day hospital stay. Part B covers health care services that will not be covered by Part A like laboratory tests, diagnostic tests, x-rays and outpatient care among others. Part C and Part D are called supplemental coverage plans.  A premium is paid for Part B.Seniors will have to get these supplemental coverage from private insurers.  Part C is a combination of Parts A and B that covers hospital care and medical services but Part C has more coverage than parts and B. Some Medicare advantage plans cover prescription drugs. Part D covers prescription drugs. Enrollees pay a premium to keep the Part D coverage.

A card will be mailed to seniors three months prior to their 65th birthday. The card will bear the member’s name and Medicare number.

Another New York health insurance option they have is Medicaid. Medicaid provides coverage to older, low-income older adults. To qualify you need to be at least 65 years old; you must be a United States citizen; your income is within their limit. The coverage will include: doctor visits, specialist care, inpatient care, outpatient care, home health care, nursing home care, prenatal care, prescription drug coverage, medical supplies and equipment. To apply for Medicaid, call HRA at 311 to see if you qualify for this program.

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