Kodak Employees Can Avoid Crowded Medicare Meetings

Many Kodak employees are scrambling to find out about different health insurance options available since losing retiree benefits recently and this is causing very crowded local meetings with Excellus Blue Cross And MVP Healthcare. Unfortunately, when you go to a community meeting you will learn about only one company at a time and this means you will have to go to several different meetings in order to learn about your different options. There is a much better easier way to go about this and you will save time and get a better understanding of your choices.

First of all, there are more choices available than just MVP or Excellus. There are several companies that offer Medicare insurance plans in Rochester and many other options also available for those who do not live in Rochester or travel frequently. Many companies and organizations will actually schedule a personal appointment with a representative that will help you navigate through the complex world of Medicare insurance.

There are also a few organizations and companies that provide Medicare Insurance help lines to assist seniors on an individual basis. You may call Lifespan or also Century Benefits Group Inc. offers a Free Health Insurance helpline dedicated to Seniors at 1-800-698-7477.

This approach may be much more beneficial to Kodak retirees since they will provide you with information and options available from all companies. You will be able to ask questions and receive personalized non-biased information and also learn about any programs or subsidies that you may qualify for. For More information you may visit www.nymedicare.org

Kodak Retirement Medical Benefits Needs And Solutions

If you are a Kodak retiree and have recently lost your medical benefits you have options. Century Benefits Group, a Rochester, NY health insurance firm has a complete portfolio of insurance options for Kodak employees based on each persons individual needs. Listed below are some insurance needs and solutions to some of the many issues facing Kodak retirees nationwide.

 You Have A Winter And Summer Residence And Split Time Between The Two

This is a common occurance among Kodak employees. If this is your situation then you will want to obtain either a Medicare Supplement plan or a Medicare Advantage PPO. Keep in mind that if you decide to go with Medicare Advantage it MUST be a PPO in order to use the plan at any Medicare provider for non emergency situations.

Medicare supplement plans can vary in price according to your place of residence. When obtaining a quote you will usually need to provide Date of Birth, Zip Code, Effective Date Of Medicare Part A AND B, and your county of residence. Some of this information may not be necessary in a couple of states but you should have it available just in case.

Note: If you enroll in a Medicare Supplement Plan and need Prescription drug coverage you will need to apply in a separate Medicare Part D plan.

For personalized information call 1-800-683-6729 and you can request a list of plans available in your home area.

You Retired From Kodak And Now Stay Close To Home Most Of The Time

If you stay near your home area most of the time and don’t travel often you may want to consider a Medicare HMO plan. With a Medicare Advantage HMO plan you will be required to receive your health care from a plan Network provider. Each private insurance plan has established their own network of health care facilities and health care professionals to cater to their members. This will often result in lower co-pays and monthly premiums for the member, however, you should always check to see if your hospitals and doctors will accept the plan before you decide to enroll. With a Medicare HMO you may only receive EMERGENCY coverage from non-network providers.

For personalized information call 1-800-683-6729 and you can request a list of plans available in your home area.

You Only Have 1 Residence But Travel Often

In this case you should refer to the first section of this article and consider Medicare Supplement or Medicare PPO plans UNLESS you only use routine Medical services in your home area. Medicare HMO plans do provide EMERGENCY services out of network but that is very limited.

For personalized information call 1-800-683-6729 and you can request a list of plans available in your home area.

Finding The Best Medicare Part D Plan

There are several ways to obtain your Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage.  It is important to know that the type of plan that you choose will depend on your specific needs. Some common questions you should ask yourself are listed below.

  1. Do you take mostly brand or generic drugs
  2. How many medications do you take on a regular basis
  3. Can any of your  brand medications be substituted for less expensive generic drugs
  4. Are any of your prescriptions available by mail order (you  may save money this way

After determining the answers to these simple questions  your next step should be to prepare  a list of all ou the prescription drugs that you take on a regular basis including

  1. The name of the drug spelled correctly (you can copy this right from the bottle)
  2. Your correct dosage
  3. The number of pills per month

Once you are armed with this information you can begin searching for an affordable Medicare Part D plan that will suit your specific needs. Each company has its own formulary and while one plan may list your drug as a tier 2 another may categorize it as a tier 3 drug and there may be certain drugs which are not offered by all plans.

In summary I would like to say that there is no “one size fits all formula” and your choice should be taken seriously and proper research and choosing the correct plan could save you thousands of dollars per year. Listed below are several websites which will assist you in you search. You can submit a request for help and then your prescription drug list and they will supply you with comparative estimates.

http://www.todaysmedicare.com

http://www.choicesformedicare.org

Good News For Those Losing Medicare Advantage Plans For 2010

While many Medicare Advantage Plans will be leaving the market or discontinuing service in some areas of the country there are others who are very competetive and trying to grab that market share. The majority of Seniors enrolled in Medicare Advantage Plans are very satisfied and enjoy the extra benefits and lower co-pays.

It is important however, to shop for  the best plans each year. You may be pleasantly surprised and might even find a plan offering better benefits than you had in the previous years. Many companies in 2010 are now offering prescription drugs during the dreaded “doughnut hole” or coverage gap.

Be careful not to simply allow the insurance companies to dictate your decisions. Many seniors simply accept the rate hikes and increases in copays rather than taking the time to look for better companies or rates. If you don’t have the patience or the time for this I would suggest finding an ethical broker or agent to help.

Although each county has its own rates and companies available you can still find many great deals. While Advantra Freedom and Wellpoint have both pulled their PFFS plans off of the market Wellpoint has Re-Entered the Market after a brief new enrollment ban with some great new Plans through their Smart-Value PFFS plans and PPO and HMO plans through Empire, Anthem, And Blue Cross Blue Shield Of Georgia. Cigna Medicare also has a great PFFS plan in many areas.

The god news is that with private companies fighting for your healthcare dollars you may find many extra’s and better service than ever before. You can visit our website at www.todaysmedicare.com  and find some basic tips and we have also added a new broker locater to find a qualified Medicare Plan broker licenced in your area.

Do You Have An Advantra Freedom Medicare Plan??

Many Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in th Advantra Freedom plan last year,and, while it was a good plan it has left many seniors dissapointed and scrambling to find a new plan with similar benefits at a low cost.

There is good news and bad news. First the bad.

  1. You can blame this on your congressmen, senators, and yes even the president. The funding for medicare and Medicare has been drastically cut causing  some companies to raise rates and lower benefits. Other companies have simply decided to drop out of the market (which produces less competition). I would suggest writing a letter to your congressman or senator.
  2. The insurance companies receive a subsidy to provide  these  additional services, however , while the cost of healthcare has risen over 5% the subsidies have increased less than 1%.
  3. The Part D formularies that are regulated by the government have been trimmed down to include less drugs and more tiers to allow for higher co-pays

Now for the good news:

  1. Since there are less companies in the market it is a bit easier to weed through the less appealing plans and narrow down your choices.
  2. There are still some good plans and companies left out there and you will be pleasantly surprised that some of these plans may even offer better plans than you had before.

So don’t worry if your 2009 plan is withdrawing from the market. Simply start looking now or find a broker to help you as we usually recommend since they have a great deal of knowledge in this area and can help you avoid a costly mistake visit http://www.todaysmedicare.com for further tips and help