Turning 65? Learn About Medicare

Wednesday, December 13, 2 p.m., Orcas Library Community Room

— from Pegi Groundwater —

If you are turning 65 soon or if you have been on Social Security Disability for two years, you are now eligible for Medicare. You will need to be prepared for a whole new medical insurance experience. Come to the Community Room (the large conference room in the original part of the library) at the Orcas Public Library on Wednesday, December 13th at 2:00 to learn how Medicare works, what your coverage options are in San Juan County, and when you must act to avoid penalties. The information will be provided by trained SHIBA volunteers who operate under the auspices of the Washington Insurance Commissioner to provide free, unbiased counseling assistance on Orcas Island.

There are lots of new provisions and options for you to understand. Medicare has four different parts: A, B, C, and D. You can stay with Original Medicare (Parts A & B) or buy a Medicare Advantage Plan (Party C) or a Medicare Supplement (also called Medigap), which is private insurance that works with Party A & B. Most people also buy Drug Insurance (Part D). There are deadlines to meet and penalties (some lasting a lifetime) for not doing things at the right time. There are resources available to help people with very low income and limited assets help pay their premiums, copays and deductibles.

The Statewide Health Insurance Benefits Advisors (SHIBA) is a free, unbiased and confidential counseling service offered by the Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner. Our trained volunteers help consumers understand their Medicare rights and options. We offer information on Medigap (Medicare Supplement) and Medicare Advantage plans, Medicaid programs, employment -related health benefits, long-term care options, fraud and abuse, and much more. We answer questions, make referrals, help evaluate and compare health insurance policies, make public presentations, and more. Call us at 1-800-562-6900, or call us locally at 360-298-7614.

This presentation is sponsored by SHIBA, a free and unbiased service of the Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner. Island Hospital has been the local sponsor of the SHIBA volunteers in San Juan County for the past 25 years.

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Turning 65? Learn About Medicare — 1 Comment

  1. This is a wonderful opportunity to get clarity on the options. It is especially useful to understand the components and to avoid penalties. It is a real person! giving real information! and speaking clearly in a vocabulary I could understand. I am so grateful to have access to this service. I’d encourage everyone to go, even for a refresher.