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Social Security Q&A

Are Seniors on Medicare Affected by Obamacare? Answer by Social Security May Be Misleading

This week’s Social Security Q&A gives good synopsis of Medicare health coverage but not of impact on senior citizens by Affordable Care Act

Jan. 6, 2014 – In answering a question about changes in Medicare due to the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), Oscar Garcia, Public Affairs Specialist with the Social Security Administration may leave the wrong impression about the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and its impact on seniors and others covered by Medicare. Medicare beneficiaries have received many benefits from this health care law but they do not need to coverage offered in the Marketplace. A clarification is offered by SeniorJournal.com in another article.

Question:

What is Medicare, and is it changing because of the Affordable Care Act?

Answer:

It is important to note that people who have Medicare coverage are not affected by the Affordable Care Act. Medicare is not a part of the Affordable Care Act’s Health Insurance Marketplace. If you are a Medicare beneficiary, your Medicare benefits are not changing. You do not need to replace your Medicare coverage with Marketplace coverage.

For more information about the Marketplace, visit www.healthcare.gov.

Medicare is health insurance for people receiving Social Security who are age 65 or older or those who have received Social Security disability benefits for more than two years. Some people are covered only by one of the four parts of Medicare; others opt to pay extra for more coverage. Understanding Medicare can save you money; here are the facts.

 

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More Than Half of U.S. Senior Citizens Would be in Poverty Without Social Security

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Read more Social Security News

also check Medicare and Senior Politics

 

The four parts of Medicare are parts A, B, C, and D.

Part A (Hospital Insurance) helps cover inpatient hospital care, skilled nursing care, hospice care, and home health care. Most people get Medicare Part A premium-free since it was earned by working and paying Social Security taxes.

Part B (Medical Insurance) helps cover services from doctors and other outpatient health care providers, outpatient care, home health care, durable medical equipment, and some preventive services. Most people pay a premium for Part B.

Part C (Medicare Advantage) allows you to choose to receive all of your health care services through a provider organization. These plans include all benefits and services covered under Part A and Part B, usually includes Medicare prescription drug coverage as part of the plan, and may include extra benefits and services for an extra cost. You must have Part A and Part B to enroll in Part C. Monthly premiums vary depending on your state, private insurer, and whether you select a health maintenance organization or a preferred provider organization.

Part D (Medicare prescription drug coverage) helps cover the cost of prescription drugs. Many people pay a premium for Part D. However, people with low income and resources may qualify for extra help from Social Security to pay the premium and deductible. To see if you qualify for extra help visit http://www.ssa.gov/prescriptionhelp.

Most people first become eligible for Medicare at age 65, and there is a monthly premium for Medicare Part B. In 2014, the premium for most people is $104.90, the same as it was in 2013. Some high-income individuals pay more than the standard premium. Your Medicare Part B premium also can be higher if you do not enroll when you are first eligible, also known as your initial enrollment period. There also is a Medicare Part B deductible of $147 in 2014. For more information about Medicare Parts A, B, C, and D, visit www.medicare.gov.

Question:

My parents recently moved into a retirement community and they are signing their house over to me. Can I still get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or will home ownership make me ineligible?

Answer:

You can own a home and still receive SSI as long as you live in the home you own. In most cases, when determining SSI eligibility we do not count as a resource the home you own and live in or the car you use. For more information about SSI and Social Security, visit www.socialsecurity.gov, or call us at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778).


Oscar Garcia is a Public Affairs Specialist with the Social Security Administration. You can direct your questions to him at: SSA, 411 Richland Hills Drive, San Antonio, Texas, 78245. You can also email him at Oscar.h.garcia@ssa.gov.

 

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