Humana Medigap Plans

Humana Medicare Supplement

Humana Medicare Supplement Plans

Humana Medicare Supplement Plans

Humana is a Top Medicare Supplement insurance company and offers the following Medigap plans: A, B, F, High deductible F, G, K, L, and N. Humana’s Medicare Supplement plans offer you the following benefits.

Medicare Part A Hospital Coverage

Humana Medigap Plans cover Medicare Part A hospital coinsurance costs. For example, you get infected by the Coronavirus and need hospitalization. Original Medicare will only cover 80% of hospital costs. However, all Humana Medigap Plans pay your 20% coinsurance costs which include the following hospital services:

  • Humana pays $176 coinsurance in 2020 for days 21 thru 100 in a skilled nursing facility on Medigap Plans C, F, G, and N. However, Plan K pays $88 coinsurance (50%), and Plan L pays $132 coinsurance (75%) during this same period. Furthermore, Plans A and B only pay for the first 20 days under Original Medicare.
  • Humana pays $352 coinsurance in 2020 for days 61 thru 90 in a Long-Term Care Hospital (LTHC). These 30 benefit days in LTHC add up to $10,560. 
  • When a hospital needs to buy blood for you, Humana Medigap plans pay for the first three pints of blood. However, Plans K only pays 50%, and Plan L only pays 75%.

Medicare only covers the first 100 days in a Skilled Nursing Facility. After one hundred days, you are responsible for all costs. Now that you know what hospital services are covered, how much is the Part A hospital deductible for Humana Medigap Plans?

Medicare Part A Deductible

All Humana Medigap Plans pay the $1408 Part A hospital deductible expect Plan A. However, Plan K only pays $704 (50%), and Plan L only pays $1056 (75%) of the Part A deductible. In other words, Humana Plans B, C, F, High deductible F, G, and N pay 100% of Part A deductible. You now know the Part A hospital coverage and costs for Humana Plans. Moreover, Humana Plans cover the following Part B medical services.

Medicare Part B Medical Coverage

X-ray senior and doctor
Senior looks at x-ray with doctor

All Humana Medigap Plans cover Part B coinsurance. However, Plan K only covers 50%, and Plan L only covers 75%. For example, while walking your dog, you trip and fall. You see your medical doctor, and he orders an X-ray. Original Medicare only covers 80% of diagnostic x-rays. A Humana Medigap Plans A, B, C, F, High deductible F, G, and N all cover the other 20%. However, Plan K only covers 50%, and Plan L only covers 75%.

Moreover, X-rays require you to pay $198 Part B deductible in 2020. If you get the X-ray in a hospital outpatient setting, you will also have a copayment. In addition to X-rays, Humana Medicare Supplements cover the following medical services:

  • Humana pays 20% coinsurance when colorectal cancer screening discovers the presence of abnormal tissue (polyp), and the doctor removes a sample for later examination. 
  • Humana pays 20% coinsurance to diagnose and treat your mental health condition after you pay $198 Part B deductible in 2020 (except Plans C and F). 
  • For men over the age of 50, Humana Plans pay 20% coinsurance for prostate cancer digital rectal exam after you pay $198 Part B deductible (except Plans C and F).

Humana Medigap Plans C and F pay the $198 Part B deductible for you. Each Medigap plan has its specific coverage and costs. First, let’s look at Humana Plan N. 

Humana Supplement Plan N

Humana Medigap Plan N pays 100% of the following Part A benefits:

  • Part A hospital, hospice care, and skilled nursing facility coinsurance
  • Part A $1408 hospital deductible

Furthermore, Humana Plan N covers 100% of Part B coinsurance costs except in the following cases:

  • Outpatient visits to a medical facility (doctor office) will require you to pay up to $20 per visit
  • Outpatient emergency room visits will cost you $50 copayment

However, should your visit to a medical facility result in your inpatient admission, you will not have any copayment. Furthermore, should your emergency room visit result in you becoming an inpatient, you will not have any copayment.

Finally, Humana Plan N covers the first three pints of blood and 80% of Foreign Travel Emergency. Now you know what is covered by Humana’s Plan N. So what doesn’t Plan N cover?

What is not covered by Humana Plan N?

Humana’s Medicare supplement plan does not cover the annual Part B deductible of $198 in 2020. Furthermore, it does not include Part B excess charges. Thus, Humana’s Medigap Plan N requires you to pay the annual $198 Part B deductible before Humana covers any medical services. Now you know what Humana Plan N covers and does not cover. So how do all Humana Plans compare side-by-side?

Compare Humana Medigap Plans

You can use the chart below to compare Humana Medigap Plans side-by-side. Benefits not covered are marked with X. Fully covered benefits show 100%. Partially benefits indicated by a percentage such as 50% with Plan K, 75% with Plan L, and 80% with Foreign Travel Emergency. This chart can help you quickly compare the benefits of Humana plans. You can download this chart for future reference.

Humana Medicare Supplement Plans
Click on Humana Medigap Plans chart to download or embed

MedicareBob Video on Humana Medigap Plans F, G, and N

You can watch Robert Bache’s MedicareBob video about Humana’s Medigap Plans F, G, and N. In this video, you will learn how Medicare Plan F works, which MedicareBob calls “Full Coverage.” You will also learn about Medicare Plan G, which MedicareBob calls “Greatest Value.” Lastly, you will discover how Part B excess charges work with Plan N.

Humana Medicare Supplement Plans C and F

Anyone who newly enrolls in Medicare on or after January 1, 2020 cannot get Medigap Plans C and F. However, anyone who had Plan C or F before January 1, 2020, can keep it. Humana Plan C and F pays your Part B deductible of $198 in 2020. Both of these plans pay 80% foreign travel emergency. However, only Plan F pays Part B excess charges. Humana Plan G is similar to Plan F.

Humana Medicare Supplement Plan G

Senior Healthcare Direct believes Plan G offers you the greatest value. You can save hundreds per year on monthly premiums on Plan G compared to Plan F. The only difference is you Plan G requires you to pay a one-time annual $198 Part B deductible in 2020. Find out how much you can save on Plan G by shopping for the best price at 1-855-368-4717.

Shop and Compare Medigap Plan Prices

You can shop and compare the best prices on Medigap plans when you use a Medicare insurance broker. Senior Healthcare Direct can get you the coverage you need at the best price. We can compare prices with over 30 A-rated insurance carriers, including Humana, Cigna, State Farm, and Anthem Blue Cross. Call Senior Healthcare Direct at 1-855-368-4717 or click the get quote button below.

medicare-supplement-plan-g-quote
Medicare mental health psychologist and senior

Does Medicare cover mental health?

Medicare mental health psychologist and senior

In this article, you will learn Medicare Parts A and B cover mental health services. In particular, you will learn Medicare covers psychotherapy to treat mental health disorders like anxiety, depression, alcohol, and substance abuse. Furthermore, you will learn how Medicare Part B covers alcohol misuse and substance abuse that includes opioid use disorder. Moreover, you will better understand depression with the story of the two senior sisters and their COVID-19 experiences. Ultimately, you will discover that psychotherapy can improve the quality of your life.

Medicare Part A – Inpatient Mental Health Services

Medicare mental health psychiatric hospital
Part A covers mental health at psychiatric hospitals

Medicare Part A covers inpatient mental health services in a general hospital or psychiatric hospital. For example, a psychiatrist may prescribe you medications and admit you to a psychiatric hospital that only cares for people with mental health conditions. If a psychiatrist admits you to a psychiatric hospital, Medicare Part A only pays for up to 190 days of inpatient services during your lifetime. So how much does Medicare pay?

How much will Medicare pay for inpatient mental health services?

Before Medicare pays for your inpatient mental health services, you must first pay Part A deductible for each 60 day benefit period. If you have a Medicare Supplement plan, you do not have to pay this hospital deductible. Medicare will cover the first 60 days in a hospital at no cost. However, between 61 and 90 days in a hospital, you pay $352 coinsurance per day unless you have a supplement plan.

Furthermore, between 91 days up to 60 days over your lifetime limit, you pay $704 coinsurance per day unless you have a supplement plan. The lifetime limit is 190 days. Beyond this lifetime limit, you pay all costs.

Moreover, Original Medicare only pays 80% of medicare-approved amount for mental health services. Therefore, you are responsible for paying 20% coinsurance while a hospital inpatient unless you have a Medicare supplement plan. So what does Medicare outpatient mental health cover?

Medicare Part B – Outpatient Mental Health Services

Medicare mental health services
Senior meets with primary care doctor and talks about his mental health

Medicare Part B covers outpatient mental health services with a primary care doctor or other qualified health professionals. For example, Medicare covers cognitive assessment and care planning with your primary doctor. This evaluation includes your one-time “Welcome to Medicare” preventive visit, which screens for depression and other signs of cognitive impairment. Moreover, Medicare covers an annual wellness visit where you can speak to your primary care doctor about your mental health. As a result of the screening, your primary doctor may refer you to a psychiatrist for further evaluation or to a psychologist for counseling.

After your psychological evaluation, a clinical psychologist or psychiatrist could recommend partial hospitalization as an alternative to inpatient psychiatric care. Under partial hospitalization, you receive more intensive treatment than you get in a clinician’s office. Treatment requires you to stay in a hospital outpatient department during the day and go home overnight. So what does outpatient mental health coverage cost?

How much will Medicare pay for outpatient mental health services?

Your one-time “Welcome to Medicare” and annual wellness visits cost zero deductible and zero coinsurance. These visits are completely free and include a yearly depression screening. To diagnose or treat your mental health condition, you pay 20% coinsurance to your doctor or other qualified health professional. Moreover, you are also required to pay the annual Part B deductible of $198 in 2020. Furthermore, you may have a copay for mental health services in a hospital outpatient clinic or department. 

However, most Medicare Supplement plans pay your 20% Part B coinsurance, so you have less out-of-pocket expenses for outpatient mental health services. The Medigap Plan G offers great value and is available for seniors new to Medicare. To shop and compare Plan G prices, call Senior Healthcare Direct at 1-855-368-4717 or get a quote. Now that you know what outpatient mental health services cost, what else do they cover?

What mental health services does Medicare cover?

Medicare covers psychotherapy sessions with a clinical psychologist
Medicare covers psychotherapy sessions with a clinical psychologist

The primary mental health service Medicare covers are psychotherapy sessions with a psychiatrist, clinical psychologist, or clinical social worker. During a psychotherapy session, you talk about your moods, feelings, thoughts, and behaviors. The Mayo Clinic says, “Psychotherapy helps you learn how to take control of your life and respond to challenging situations with healthy coping skills.” Anyone going through difficult times can benefit from psychotherapy by treating mental health disorders like anxiety.

Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety disorders originate from your thoughts and feelings. You feel anxiety when you think about or remember events that make you nervous. Anxiety becomes a disorder when it negatively affects the physical and emotional quality of your life. 

For example, Memorial Day can be traumatic for veterans who saw combat and death. It is especially traumatic when veterans experience the loss of their military friends. This trauma can cause upsetting memories, feeling on edge, and trouble sleeping. If you experience these symptoms longer than a few weeks or months, you may have Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Moreover, treating PTSD can help with other mental health disorders. 

Major Depressive Disorder

When a person’s outlook on life changes from mostly positive to negative, depression may be the problem. For instance, people who view a situation as permanent are more likely to be depressed. As an illustration, let’s compare the COVID-19 experiences of two senior sisters Sue and Tammy.

Mental Health of Sue and Tammy

Senior sisters Sue and Tammy

Before the Coronavirus, Sue goes shopping and buys new clothes. Then the governor issues a COVID-19 stay-at-home order. As the weeks go by, Sue stays home and stares at all the new clothes in her closet. Most of them still have tags because she never wore them. After a few weeks alone at home, Sue feels her life is not worth living.

On the other hand, Tammy loves to take photos outdoors. When the governor gives the stay-at-home order, Tammy takes her photography indoors. She stays home and shoots pictures of the meals she prepares. Then she shares these photos on social media. Tammy spends weeks sharing photos and looking at photography, especially on Instagram.

When the governor reopens, Sue feels no reason to leave her home, so she continues to stay home. Whereas, Tammy takes a trip to a county park and uses her telephoto lens to photograph birds. At the park, Tammy calls her sister Sue and finds out she is not leaving her home and asks her to call the doctor.

Tammy is suffering from depression. Her thoughts and behavior make Tammy feel hopeless about her life, and she believes she can do nothing to change it. A highly pessimistic outlook on life has led her to self-isolation. Hopefully, Tammy speaks with a clinical psychologist and gets the psychotherapy she needs.

Types of Psychotherapy covered by Medicare

Group psychotherapy
Group psychotherapy

Medicare covers the following types of psychotherapy:

  • Individual – only one patient in the therapy session
  • Family – with the patient present or without the patient present
  • Group – more than one individual (such a couple) in a therapy session

During your psychotherapy session, you can expect the following. First, a clinical interview where you can sit down in the clinician’s office and talk for one or two hours about your life and personal history. The clinician will often ask you specific questions about various stages in your life. In subsequent visits, the clinical therapist may request you take specific psychological tests.

For example, the most commonly used personality test is the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI-2). It’s a long 567 true/false test that measures dysfunction of personality. You usually take the test on a computer in the clinician’s office. The test helps the clinician better understand your personality and diagnose mental illness.

When a clinician discovers you misuse alcohol, he/she may refer you to your primary care doctor for alcohol misuse counseling. However, if the clinician finds you are physically or psychologically dependent upon alcohol, you could be diagnosed with alcohol dependence. As a result, treatment can include relapse prevention, support groups, psychotherapy, and setting short-term goals. Furthermore, the 4-point Smart Recovery Program can also help you recover from alcohol dependence as well as opioids and other addictive substances.

Medicare covers Alcohol Misuse and Substance Abuse

Alcohol Misuse Counseling

Medicare Part B covers alcohol misuse once per year. Any adult, including pregnant women who misuse alcohol, can get up to four brief face-to-face counseling sessions with your primary care doctor. Moreover, Medicare pays all costs, so you pay nothing. So exactly how many alcoholic drinks are too many?

Alcohol Consumption and Misuse

A senior misuses alcohol
A senior misuses alcohol

A standard alcoholic drink is 12 ounces of beer, 8-9 ounces of malt liquor, 5 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces (one-shot) of distilled spirits. The National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism defines the following terms:

  • Moderate alcohol consumption is up to one drink per day for women and up to two drinks per day for men.
  • Low-Risk drinking for women is no more than three drinks per day and no more than seven drinks per week.
  • Low-Risk drinking for men is no more than four drinks per day and no more than fourteen drinks per week.

When you drink more than these amounts, you are misusing alcohol and can cause harm to yourself or those around you. Furthermore, anyone under the age of 21 or pregnant women who use alcohol constitutes misuse. If you misuse alcohol, please call your doctor. In some cases, people who misuse alcohol also abuse other substances like opioids.

Medicare covers Opioid Use Disorder

Senior opioid misuse disorder
Senior opioid misuse disorder

January 1, 2020, CMS will pay certified Opioid Treatment Programs for opioid use disorder treatment services under Medicare Part B. You pay nothing for these treatment services. However, you must pay the $198 Part B deductible in 2020. Opioid treatment programs include counseling and therapy services in person and through Medicare Telehealth (real-time video or over the phone). You can find an Opioid Treatment Program Service provider in your area.

Opioid Risks and Safer Options

Opioid prescription pain medications are highly addictive substances and cause 70% of all drug overdose deaths in America. You can reduce your risk of opioid addiction and death by taking nonopioid medications such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil). Moreover, ask your clinical psychologist about Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to help modify your physical, behavioral, and emotional triggers of pain and stress. Furthermore, Medicare covers acupuncture for chronic lower back pain.

Medicare Mental Health Takeaways

Medicare covers inpatient (Part A) and outpatient (Part B) mental health services. In conclusion, this article’s most important takeaways include:

  • Medicare Part A pays up to 190 days in a psychiatric hospital.
  • Annual mental health screenings are free with Medicare Part B.
  • Most Medicare Supplement plans pay your 20% Part B coinsurance.
  • Psychotherapy treats mental health disorders like anxiety, depression, alcohol, and substance abuse.
  • Medicare Part B covers alcohol misuse and substance abuse, including opioid use disorder treatment.

Psychotherapy can improve the quality of your life. If you are facing challenging times, remember you are not alone. Medicare provides mental health service, so call a clinical psychologist and schedule your appointment.

We help seniors shop and save on Medicare coverage nationwide. You can shop for Medicare Advantage, Supplements, and Part D plans. Call Senior Healthcare Direct at 1-855-368-4717 and speak with a licensed agent or get a quote.

Medicare Acupuncture experience

Does Medicare Cover Acupuncture in 2020?

Medicare does cover acupuncture in 2020. In this article, you will find out how many acupuncture visits are covered and which medical condition is treatable by acupuncture. Moreover, you will learn what acupuncture is, who can administer it, and the story of Mary’s acupuncture experience. Ultimately, you will discover that acupuncture is a safer pain management alternative to opioids, especially for seniors.

Medicare Covers Acupuncture

On January 21, 2020, CMS announces Medicare Part B covers up to 12 acupuncture visits in 90 days for chronic lower back pain. Before this date, Medicare did not cover acupuncture. Medicare.gov defines chronic back pain as follows:

  • Lasting 12 weeks or longer
  • Having no identifiable systemic cause (not associated with metastatic, inflammatory, or infectious disease)
  • Pain that is not associated with surgery or pregnancy

Moreover, an additional eight sessions for a total of 20 treatments will be covered if you show improvement. However, if your doctor decides your chronic lower back pain is not improving or gets worse, then Medicare will not cover your acupuncture treatments. Furthermore, Medicare does not cover acupuncture for any condition other than chronic lower back pain. Now you know Medicare covers acupuncture, so what exactly is it?

What is Acupuncture?

medicare accupuncture

Acupuncture is the practice of penetrating the skin with thin, solid, metallic needles at specific Acupuncture is the practice of penetrating the skin with thin, solid, metallic needles at specific points on your body. In traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture is most commonly used to treat pain. As shown in the photo, acupuncture needles are very thin like a strand of hair, and the needle length is 1.5 inches. Acupuncture uses these needles to stimulate points on your nerves, muscles, and connective tissue. So who can administer acupuncture treatments, and is it safe?

Acupuncture Practitioners

Medicare Part B requires the acupuncture practitioner to be a licensed health care provider. For example, a doctor, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant can administer acupuncture. Moreover, practitioners must have a master’s or doctoral-level degree in acupuncture or Oriental Medicine. These licensed practitioners use sterile single-use, disposable needles. So the risk of infection is minimal, but does it hurt?

Mary’s Acupuncture Experience

medicare accupuncture experience

Mary is a senior diagnosed with osteoporosis. Like many senior women, Mary’s bones have become weak and brittle over the years. As a result, she suffers from chronic lower back pain. Mary wants to go walking with her grandkids, but it’s too painful on her back. She calls her doctor and makes an appointment.

At doctor Anderson’s office, he asks Mary what’s wrong? Mary says, “I have been having lower back pain for the last three months.” The doctor exams Mary and says, “I can prescribe oxycodone for the pain.” Mary looks intensely at the doctor and shouts, “No! My sister died from an opioid overdose.” Dr. Anderson recalls drug overdose deaths from the CDC:

2018 Drug Overdose Deaths

OxyContin Oxycodone pills
OxyContin also called Oxycodone is an addictive opioid.

“I’m sorry about your sister,” says Dr. Anderson. After a moment of silence, Dr. Anderson says, “Acupuncture is a safer alternative to opioids.” Mary listens to the doctor and learns how Medicare Part B covers acupuncture treatments for lower back pain. Then Mary makes an appointment with a licensed acupuncture practitioner. 

Mary lies down on her stomach, concerned the needles will hurt when they penetrate her skin. Doctor Lee, the acupuncture practitioner, inserts the needles. Mary is relieved she does not feel them. Then Dr. Lee applies mild electrical pulses to the needles, and Mary feels a tingling sensation down her back. After about 15 minutes, the acupuncture session is over. 

Mary’s Acupuncture Results

After a few weeks of acupuncture, Mary’s lower back pain improves. Mary starts going on walks with her grandkids. Best of all, Mary got pain relief without the overdose danger of opioids. After 90 days, Mary has a follow-up appointment with Doctor Anderson. He is happy to hear Mary’s lower back pain has improved and adds eight more acupuncture sessions.

Medicare Acupuncture Conclusion

You learned you could get up to 20 Medicare acupuncture treatments per year for chronic lower back pain. Moreover, you learned acupuncture is the practice of penetrating the skin with metal needles administered by licensed acupuncture practitioners. Furthermore, you learned that Mary got relief from lower back pain through acupuncture, which is a safer alternative than opioids. To get acupuncture, you need Medicare Part B.

Medicare Part B Application

Seniors new to Medicare can apply for Medicare Part B. Learn how you can apply for the safety of your home. You can download the Part B application, fill it out, mail or fax it to your local Social Security office. Robert Bache shows you how to apply for Medicare Part B online in a video. So you can complete the entire Part B application online.

Medicare Part B covers Chiropractic Service

Medicare Part B covers chiropractic services to correct spinal misalignment and alleviate your lower back pain. Learn about the chiropractic costs covered by Medicare and what Medicare Supplement Plan G pays. You can even watch an educational video by Robert Bache.

Coronavirus Cases and Deaths May 2020

Coronavirus Cases and Deaths

Based on global data on Coronavirus testing, America has led the world since March 26, 2020 with the most Coronavirus cases and deaths. When you compare the United States with other countries, America has more COVID-19 cases than the other top seven countries combined. So America, more than any other country in the world, needs to protect its people.

Coronavirus cases and deaths by country

In this article, you will better understand how the Coronavirus War is killing more Americans per day than the Civil War, how many more Americans are forecast to die in the coming weeks, and which states will have the highest increases in COVID-19 deaths. Moreover, you will discover which U.S. states have reported the most Coronavirus cases and deaths. Finally, the article tells you which Americans are at higher risk of COVID-19 and what you can do to protect your health.

American Deaths from Coronavirus COVID-19

President Trump

With 1.34 million Coronavirus cases, NBC News reports on May 11, 2020, that U.S. Coronavirus death toll passed 80,000. President Trump has called himself a “wartime president,” and upon reopening America we need to be “warriors.” So how does the Coronavirus War compare to the deadliest conflict in American history?

The American Civil War (1861–65) killed more Americans (750,000) than any other war in American history. In our civil war, 520 Americas died every day. On the other hand, our Coronavirus War has killed between 1,000 – 3,000 Americans every day, as shown in the graph below.

Graphic of coronavirus deaths per day
NBC News graphic shows Coronavirus deaths per day in the U.S.

So more Americans are dying per day than in our deadliest Civil War. Moreover, at a rate of 40,000 deaths per month, we could see half a million (500,000) dead Americans in the first year. With so many Americans dying from COVID-19, how many national deaths does the CDC forecast?

CDC National Forecast deaths
CDC National Forecast U.S. death toll over 100,000 by end of May, 2020.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) predicts in additional 20,000 COVID-19 deaths in the next two weeks. By the end of May 2020, the American death toll is forecast to be over 100,000. In the coming weeks, the following U.S. States may see substantial death increases:

States with increasing COVID-19 deaths

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Delaware
  • District of Columbia
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Minnsota
  • Nebraska
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio

  • Puerto Rico
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • South Dakota
  • Virginia

The eighteen states above all have an upward curve, which closely matches or exceeds the slope of the national forecast. The CDC predicts these states to have the highest increases in COVID-19 deaths in the coming weeks. Likewise, these states will also have the highest number of new Coronavirus cases. So which U.S. states have had the most COVID-19 cases?

Coronavirus Cases and Deaths by State

New York is the epicenter of the U.S. Coronavirus Pandemic. It has suffered the highest number of COVID-19 cases 337,000 and deaths 21,640 reported by Wikipedia. Sixteen states have had over 20,000 cases, as shown in the CDC map of the United States.

CDC US Map of COVID-19 cases
CDC US Map of COVID-19 cases

All U.S. States have reported Coronavirus cases. The top sixteen states with the most COVID-19 cases and deaths ranked in order from highest to lowest cases include the following:

  1. New York (338K cases, 21,845 deaths)
  2. New Jersey (141K cases, 9,508 deaths)
  3. Illinois (83K cases, 3,601 deaths)
  4. Massachusetts (79K cases, 5,141 deaths)
  5. California (67K cases, 2,770 deaths)
  6. Pennsylvania (57K cases, 3,806 deaths)

7. Michigan (48K cases, 4,674 deaths)
8. Florida (41K cases, 1,779 deaths)
9. Texas (39K cases, 1,100 deaths)
10. Georgia (34K cases, 1,460 deaths)
11. Connecticut (33K cases, 3,008 deaths)
12. Maryland (33K cases, 1,683 deaths)

13. Louisiana (31K cases, 2,242 deaths)
14. Virginia (25K cases, 891 deaths)
15. Ohio (25K cases, 1,436 deaths)
16. Indiana (24K cases, 1,411 deaths)

These sixteen U.S. states include the top ten most populated states except for North Carolina. However, the CDC forecasts North Carolina will have a substantial increase in COVID-19 deaths and, as a result, cases in the coming weeks. So now that you know which states are most affected by COVID-19, which populations in these states have a higher risk of severe illness and death?

Americans at higher risk of COVID-19

The CDC reports that seniors age 65 or older and any person with serious underlying medical conditions are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19. Census.gov projects 3.5 working adults for every retirement-age person in 2020. Thus, the senior population is 28% of the current 2020 population (329 million) equals 92 million seniors. In other words, 3 out of 10 Americans are seniors at higher risk of Coronavirus illness and death. So how many people have serious underlying medical conditions?

60% of Americans at higher risk for COVID-19

The CDC reports 6 in 10 Americans have a chronic disease. These medical conditions include heart disease, cancer, chronic lung disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, and chronic kidney disease. Americans with these serious underlying medical conditions are at higher risk for severe illness and death from the Coronavirus. So how do you determine if you have a chronic disease?

You have a chronic illness when health conditions last one year or longer. Thus, 60% or 197 million Americans have a long-term health condition and are at higher risk for COVID-19. As a result, heart disease, cancer, and diabetes are the leading causes of death in America. In the short term, COVID-19 will join this list of leading causes of death. However, your behavior has a huge impact on stopping chronic disease. You can remove the following risk behaviors to prevent chronic disease.

Health Risk Behaviors

  • Tobacco use and exposure to secondhand smoke
  • Poor nutrition, diets low in fruits and vegetables
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Excessive alcohol use
US Chronic Disease pie chart

How to Protect Your Health

You can reduce your risk of severe illness from COVID-19 by quit smoking, eating more healthy foods, getting more physical exercise, and drinking less alcohol. When you do get sick or injured, you can minimize your risk of Coronavirus exposure by communicating with your doctor remotely from the safety of your home. For example, seniors who are at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19 can use Medicare Telehealth

Moreover, when you go outside, avoid touching public surfaces. The Coronavirus can live on surfaces and touching these surfaces, and then your face can infect you with COVID-19. Another Coronavirus tip is to cough into your elbow (instead of your hands) to slow the spread of COVID-19. Get more Coronavirus tips to stay safe

Furthermore, make sure you have health insurance. Seniors new to Medicare can safely apply for Medicare Part B from the safety of your home. Likewise, you can improve your health coverage with a Medicare Advantage, Supplement, or Part D plan by calling 1-855-368-4717 from the safety of your home. You can also get your quote by clicking the button below.

Get Medicare Quote
Senior Doctor on the computer laptop screen and Senior patient conferencing on treatment for a cold

Coronavirus Medicare Telehealth

Coronavirus Medicare Telehealth

To limit the risk of exposure and the spread of the Coronavirus, seniors can use Medicare telehealth. Seniors can communicate remotely with their doctors and other healthcare professionals from the safety of their homes using telehealth services. This article will show you how to use Medicare telehealth for doctor visits, counseling, and mental health.

Furthermore, you can use telehealth services using Internet devices you already have at home. Medicare Telehealth during the Coronavirus Pandemic can keep you safe. So what is Medicare Telehealth?

Medicare Part B Telehealth

Medicare Part B covers telehealth medical services with healthcare professionals using real-time video communication on the Internet. If you are new to Medicare, you can apply for Medicare Part B. Original Medicare covers your telehealth benefits. Consequently, you are responsible for paying 20% Part B coinsurance and Part B deductible of $198 in 2020.

However, you can get a Medicare Supplement plan that pays your Part B coinsurance. Medigap Plan G covers 100% of your coinsurance, so you can use telehealth services as often as you want and only have to pay a one-time annual $198 Part B deductible. Now that you know what it costs to use telehealth services, why is should you use it?

Telehealth Protects the Lives of Seniors

Coronavirus Medicare Telehealth protects seniors
Fred communicates with his doctor using Medicare Telehealth.

Fred is a senior who got sick and needs to see a doctor. Instead of traveling to the doctor’s office and exposing himself to other sick people, Fred uses Medicare Telehealth to keep himself safe from exposure to the Coronavirus. Moreover, Fred has a wife at home. The worse thing Fred could do is get COVID-19 from another sick patient by traveling to his doctor’s office. Then bring the virus home to his wife.

For this reason, Fred uses his home computer and WiFi Internet for an e-visit with his doctor. Fred opens his email and clicks a link that opens a Zoom application on his laptop. The doctor appears on Fred’s computer screen as a real-time video, and Fred’s built-in video camera and microphone allow the doctor to communicate with Fred.

The doctor asks Fred several medical questions about symptoms of Fred’s illness. Then the doctor prescribes medication to treat the condition. Fred takes the prescribed medicine and is feeling better. Most importantly, Fred’s wife is still healthy.

Medicare Part B Telehealth Counseling

Medicare Part B can provide you with the following counseling telehealth benefits:


Alcohol Misuse Counseling

Alcohol Misuse Counseling beer icon

You can receive alcohol misuse counseling when your primary doctor determines you are misusing alcohol. Consequently, you can get up to 4 brief face-to-face counseling sessions per year. Alcohol misuse counseling is free.

If you are someone you care about is drinking too much alcohol or using other drugs, call Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s Disaster Distress Helpline at 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66747.


Cardiovascular Behavioral Therapy

Cardiovascular Behavioral Therapy heart icon

Cardiovascular behavioral therapy helps lower your risk of cardiovascular disease. You can receive one therapy visit per year with your primary care doctor. Moreover, you pay nothing as long as your doctor accepts Medicare assignment. So what exactly can therapy do for you?

During your therapy, your doctor may discuss aspirin use, blood pressure, and give you tips on eating well.


Diabetes Self-Management Training

Diabetes Self-Management Training icon
Monitoring
blood sugar

When your doctor diagnoses you with diabetes, you can get diabetes self-management training (DSMT). This training teaches you to cope with and manage your diabetes. For example, DSMT may include eating healthy, being active, monitoring blood sugar, taking prescription drugs, and reducing risks. DSMT may cover up to ten hours, for instance, one hour of individual training and 9 hours of group training. So now that you know what DSMT includes and covers, what does it cost?

Medicare will pay 80% of DSMT costs. Thus, you must pay the remaining 20% unless you have a Medicare Supplement plan. Furthermore, you will need to pay Part B deductible.


Medical Nutrition Therapy

kidney icon

If your doctor diagnoses you with diabetes, kidney disease, or you recently received a kidney transplant, then you qualify for medical nutrition therapy (MNT). In this case, Original Medicare covers all costs, so you pay nothing. MNT may include the following:

  • An initial nutrition and lifestyle assessment
  • Individual or group nutrition therapy services
  • Help you manage the lifestyle factors that affect your diabetes
  • Follow-up visits to check your progress in achieving your diet

Obesity Behavioral Therapy

obesity icon

Doctors use a reference chart called Body Mass Index (BMI) to determine whether a person is obese or not. To find your BMI number, you locate your height in inches, then your weight in pounds. If you have a BMI of 30 or more, then you qualify for Obesity Behavioral Therapy. Now that you know whether or not you are obese, how can Obesity Behavioral Therapy help you?

You can talk with your doctor or other primary care practitioners to help you lose weight by focusing on diet and exercise. Furthermore, Obesity Behavioral Therapy is free. 


STI Counseling

STD icon

You can receive counseling for sexually transmitted infections (STI) if you are a sexually active adolescent or adult with an increased risk of STIs. You can have up to 2 individual 20-30 minute, face-to-face, high-intensity behavioral counseling sessions every year for free. So what are the benefits of STI counseling?

The counseling program is intended to promote sexual risk reduction or risk avoidance through education, skills training, and guidance of sexual behavior.


Tobacco Cessation Counseling

No Smoking icon

A doctor or health care provider who accepts Medicare assignment can provide up to 8 visits of smoking and tobacco-use cessation counseling per year. These counseling visits can help you stop smoking or using tobacco. Furthermore, tobacco cessation counseling is free.

You can get help to quite smoking by calling 1-800-QUITNOW (784-8669).

Betty’s Coronavirus Anxiety and Medicare Telehealth

Coronavirus Medicare telehealth Betty
Betty wears a face mask during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Betty is a senior and has not been face-to-face with her grandkids in six weeks. Like many grandmothers across the country, Betty has socially isolated herself to avoid spreading and becoming infected by COVID-19. Moreover, Betty has chronic heart disease and puts her at high risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19. So she stays home and only leaves to visit the pharmacy and grocery store.

Everywhere Betty goes, she puts on her face mask and sees other people wearing face masks. When waiting in line at the pharmacy, Betty stands on social distancing floor markings. At checkout, a plexiglass barrier further isolates her from the checkout clerk. The entire experience is emotionally disturbing. Then Betty gets a call from her son.

Doug told his mother, “I tested positive for the Coronavirus.” Betty is shocked and dismayed that her son has COVID-19, especially because Doug has diabetes and is at higher risk for severe illness. Betty is having trouble sleeping. She schedules a Medicare telehealth call with a psychologist.

Doctor Feldman a clinical psychologist, speaks with Betty on a real-time video call. Dr. Feldman listens to Betty and gives her some professional advice, including behaviors for reducing her anxiety. As a result, Betty is feeling better and sleeping better.

Get Medicare Telehealth for Coronavirus Anxiety

Betty got the mental health services she needed for her Coronavirus anxiety, and so can you. Medicare Part B covers 80% of the costs of outpatient mental health. You pay 20% of the Medicare-approved amount and Part B deductible of $198 in 2020. With Medicare telehealth, you can communicate with a mental health professional from the safety of your home. Moreover, you can avoid paying Part B coinsurance with a Medicare supplement plan.

Senior Healthcare Direct can help you find the best Medicare supplement plan for you. We can shop and compare Medigap plans with the Top Supplement insurance companies. For example, insurance carriers you know and trust such as Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross, Mutual of Omaha, and more. To get a free Medigap quote, call 1-855-368-4717 or get a quote.

Coronavirus US states reopening cases

Coronavirus US States Reopening May 4, 2020