FAQ Friday: How to Enroll in Medicare Part B and it’s Coverage
Enrolling your Medicare Part B depends on if you’re drawing your social security benefit. If you’re drawing your social security benefit you’ll automatically be enrolled in Medicare Part B. If you’re not drawing your social security benefit then you can register for Medicare Part B in one of three ways:
- You can register online through social security’s website.
- You can call social security and register over the phone.
- You can go into your local social security office and register in person.
If you deferred your Medicare Part B until a later date because you were still working, you will want to go into the social security office because you will have to provide what is called a letter of creditable coverage. You need to have that form completed by your employer. This will verify that you’ve been working and that you had coverage with your employer. Our office has access to this letter and we can provide it to you.
Medicare Part B covers all of your doctor and medical bills. For example: lab work, x-rays, outpatient procedures, CT scans, MRI’s, specialist visits, physical therapy etc. It also covers outpatient medications that are administered in a doctor’s office such as Humira injections or chemotherapy medications. Medicare Part B will also cover ambulance rides should you need one. Key tip: make sure you can not walk to the ambulance. Medicare may not cover ambulance rides if you can walk to the ambulance. Medicare Part B will also cover outpatient mental health doctors’ visits.
Many people get confused and think that Medicare Part B will cover you 100%, but this isn’t true. Medicare Part B comes with a small annual deductible of $183.00 (for 2018). After that deductible is paid, Medicare Part B will pay 80% for those services. There is no limit to the 20% that you have to pay, which is the scariest part about Medicare. This is why Medicare has Medicare Supplements or Medicare Advantage Plans that you can purchase to protect you from that 20%.