Laid Off Due to Covid-19 and 65+? 3 Tips to Transition to Medicare

Updated: Sep 2, 2020

Businesses across the country and Hawaii were forced to lay off or furlough millions of workers as temporary stay at home and state-wide shutdowns went into effect to slow the spread of COVID-19. With health benefits tied so closely to employment for most Americans, the layoffs have left millions in an uncertain situation.

Senior workers who were unexpectedly let go from their jobs because of COVID-19 may be feeling overwhelmed about a forced retirement five to ten years earlier than they had been planning on and suddenly needing to learn about their Medicare options. Initially, there is a lot to learn but over time and with the right support, seniors can make a fairly seamless transition to their new health care coverage.

3 tips to ease the transition from private healthcare to Medicare

If you have found yourself unexpectedly needing to transition to Medicare, we want to make the process as easy as possible. Here are three tips to help make your transition from private healthcare to Medicare go smoothly:

1. Do not delay enrollment or you could be limiting your options. Most new applicants are eligible to enroll three months before the month of their 65th birthday and up to three months after it. After that, the general enrollment period is January 1 through March 31, although coverage does not take place until July 1. Fill out Form HCFA-40B (Application for Enrollment in Medicare) and take it to your local social security office.

2. Learn about your different plan options.

a. Original Medicare Part A covers hospital and emergency health care.

b. Original Medicare Part B covers doctors’ visits, etc., usually with a monthly payment, copay, coinsurance and deductible.

c. Medicare Advantage Plans (Part C Plan) are healthcare plans offered by Medicare approved healthcare companies. All Medicare Advantage plans cover everything that original Medicare covers plus most offer a