Here’s the Rundown: Health care is a major concern for Americans. The United States government has a health insurance plan called Medicare. Medicare in Maryland is for people aged 65+ and certain people under 65 with disabilities.
If you are one of the almost 1.1M people who receives Medicare in Maryland, as of February 2020, you may wonder what your options are. Your options could be:
- Original Medicare, plus a stand-alone Part D prescription drug plan, and a Medicare Supplement insurance plan to cover out-of-pocket costs
- or an all-in-one Medicare Advantage plan.
Read on to learn about your options for Medicare in Maryland:
Medicare in Maryland
Original Medicare has two parts: Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) and Medicare Part B (medical insurance).
Original Medicare is available to U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents of at least five years, who are 65+, and people with certain disabilities.
When do I enroll in Medicare in Maryland
In Maryland you’re automatically enrolled in Medicare when you turn 65 if you’re already getting Social Security benefits.
If you’re not enrolled automatically, you can sign up for Original Medicare during your Medicare Initial Enrollment Period.
This period begins 3 months before the month you turn 65, your birthday month, and it ends 3 months after your birthday month.
If you miss your Initial Enrollment Period, you can also enroll in Medicare during the General Enrollment Period that happens every year from January 1 to March 31.
But if you miss your Initial Enrollment Period and enroll in Medicare later, you might pay a late-enrollment penalty. This penalty will mean higher monthly premiums.
If you missed your Initial Enrollment Period because you had insurance through your job or union, you will be able to sign up during a Special Enrollment Period. These periods last 8 months and you won’t have to pay a late-enrollment fee.
Medicare in Maryland Coverage
Medicare Part A is hospital insurance and it covers things like:
- Hospital care
- Skilled nursing facility care
- Nursing home care
- Hospice care
- Limited home health services
Medicare Part B, which is medical insurance, covers things like:
- Doctor visits
- Medicare-approved clinical research
- Ambulance services
- Durable medical equipment, like wheel chairs
- Mental health care
- Second opinion before surgery
Medicare in Maryland: Private Insurance
You may choose to get your Medicare benefits in Maryland through Original Medicare or Medicare Advantage plan (Medicare Part C).
Medicare Advantage (MA) plans are sold by private insurance companies approved by Medicare.
A Medicare Advantage plan in Maryland is required by the government to cover the same things as Original Medicare, except hospice care which is still covered by Part A.
Some Medicare Advantage plans also offer extra coverage that isn’t covered by Original Medicare.
These extra benefits are things like routine hearing, routine vision, or routine dental benefits.
A common type of Medicare Part C plan is a Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug (MA-PD) plan, which combines health and prescription drug coverage into a single private plan.
To learn more, read about Medicare Advantage plans in Maryland.
If you stick with Original Medicare in Maryland, you may be able to get a Medicare Supplement (Medigap) insurance plan.
Medicare Supplement insurance plans in Maryland are sold by private insurance companies. They can help you pay for out-of-pocket costs for services covered by Original Medicare.
Out-of-pocket expenses are things like coinsurance, copays, and deductibles.
Prescription drug coverage for Medicare beneficiaries is available through Medicare Part D.
These plans can help you pay for prescription medications.
Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plans in Maryland are designed to work with Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans that do not cover prescription drugs.
Your Medicare plan options will depend on where you live in Maryland.
You may want to start by considering your personal health and prescription drug needs.
Then research what types of plans and coverage options are available where you live by entering your zip code on this page.
Resources for Medicare in Maryland
There are a number of resources to help people who get Medicare in Maryland find information.
Here are some links that may be helpful: