If you need affordable health coverage, Medicare may be the perfect solution. This federal health insurance program helps approximately 45 million Americans cover medical costs, including prescription drugs, doctor visits and much more.
Applying for Medicare is simple. You can quickly submit an online application through the Social Security Administration (SSA) today. If you’re eligible, you can start enjoying benefits as soon as you need them.
Usually, people associate Medicare eligibility with retirement. In fact, some Americans miss out on benefits they are eligible for because they make the mistake of thinking that you can only get Medicare if you are 65 or older.
While it is true that most people enrolled in Medicare are over retirement age, there are also other situations that can make you eligible for Medicare regardless of your age.
If you are in one of these situations, you can be under 65 and qualify for free Medicare hospital coverage, as well as prescription drug coverage and medical insurance.
To sign up for Medicare if you are younger than 65, you must meet one of the following requirements:
- You receive disability income from either the Railroad Retirement Board or Social Security.
- You have End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD).
- You have Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS).
If you have ALS or ESRD, one additional requirement is that you need to have paid into Medicare for 10 years or be the spouse or a dependent of someone who has.
If you meet one of the requirements above, you would also be eligible for a Medicare Part B plan, which covers medically necessary coverage.
This type of plan comes with a premium, but you can guarantee the lowest one possible by making sure you sign up as soon as you become eligible, since those who wait too long to sign up may have to pay a penalty.
Read on to learn more about Medicare costs, as well as how each part of Medicare works and what kind of coverage it provides.