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Why should I keep Medicare part B?

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  • Why should I keep Medicare part B?

    I have good (sorta) private insurance (BCBS) and collect SSDI which entitles me to Medicare parts A + B. Unfortunately Medicare is a big pain in the ass.

    A friend told me to drop part B and then all my DME and doctor visits would go straight to BCBS and I would not have to deal with Medicare except if I'm in the hospital.

    Anyone have insight on the accuracy of this or reasons why I should or should not do it?

  • #2
    Your Bluecross should be your primary anyway and your Medicare your secondary.

    Explain a little more about why it is a pain in the ass. Everything should be going through BCBS first and you should not have to worry about Medicare paying anything unless you go to a facility that wont accept BCBS.

    Are you just not wanting to pay your monthly fee for Medicare or are you having a problem with them?

    When I had BCBS as my primary I never had to pay out of pocket deductibles because Medicare was billed as my secondary. You only pay your copay.

    It will help to have both if you ever have outpatient surgury or procedures...Most procedures are done on outpatient basis now anyway.

    I was insured through my workplace.
    Last edited by darkeyed_daisy; 11-17-2006, 08:17 PM.
    T12-L2; Burst fracture L1: Incomplete walking with AFO's and cane since 1989

    My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am. ~Author Unknown

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    • #3
      Cris,

      I would really check into things before you drop Medicare Part B. A lot depends on why you have the BCBS policy. My husband had BCBS through his employer. Once he became disabled (C3-C4 complete) he retired from his company as totally and permanently disabled. He was able to keep his BCBS policy. Once he was eligible for Medicare, he was required to take the Medicare. Medicare is now his primary insurance and the BCBS policy that he still holds became his secondary. There are very specific guidelines about this. If you are receiving BCBS from an employer where you no longer work due to disability, then Medicare becomes your primary insurance. If for example, I carried my husband’s insurance, and I still was actively working then my BCBS would be primary and Medicare would be secondary for my husband. Even though my husband and our family is still covered under his BCBS policy, he is required to take the Medicare and it is primary for him. He could not drop Medicare. At one time I had a little card that listed various circumstances and which policy would be primary and which would be secondary. If you are receiving BCBS from a current or past employer, I would check all the rules before I dropped anything.

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      • #4
        I second taj2002...these days, most if not all private insurance companies seem to make you take advantage of medicare, if you're eligible for it.

        Even if you're not signed up for medicare, but are just eligible to be on it, they might make you get it. I've heard stories like this from different people in the past few years.

        I'd keep it just to be safe.
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        • #5
          yes taj has it right, i can add that if your bcbs policy sayd that they are now secondary and medicare is primary if you drop medicare part b , blue cross will only pay the secondary portion, you are responsible for the primary portion.
          the most important thing is to find out is medicare primary or secondary.
          call bcbs and find out exactly how your policy is written.
          in my case bcbs is my primary since i am still on the payroll, though i am out on disability. when i official retire than medicare is my primary and bcbs is my secondary
          cauda equina

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