Com­pare health plans

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - VOICES -

Peo­ple on So­cial Se­cu­rity paid into Medi­care (10-year min­i­mum to qual­ify) from each pay­check. The av­er­age So­cial Se­cu­rity check is about $1,360 per month. Taken out of that is $110 for Medi­care Part B, plus money for a drug plan. Medi­care Part B has a $166 de­ductible and will only pay the ap­proved amount; you may be billed for the bal­ance. Medi­care Part A has an 80 per­cent/20 per­cent split; you pay 20 per­cent. There is also fed­eral in­come tax on part of your So­cial Se­cu­rity.

You qual­ify for Med­i­caid if your in­come is be­low 138 per­cent of the fed­eral poverty level ($12,060 or $1,386 per month). You get med­i­cal cov­er­age with no de­ductible, zero split, no pay­ment above ap­proved cost, plus drug cov­er­age at zero cost. Cost-shar­ing, if any, is so low it might as well be zero. Wel­fare pay­ments are also not tax­able in­come.

How do they com­pare? With Medi­care you pay a pay­roll tax, Med­i­caid no pay­roll tax. Medi­care Part B you pay $110 per month, Med­i­caid you pay noth­ing. Medi­care Part A has an 80 per­cent/20 per­cent split, Med­i­caid pays 100 per­cent (there is no split). Medi­care Part B has a de­ductible and ap­proved amount, Med­i­caid there is no de­ductible or pay­ment for be­ing over an ap­proved amount. Medi­care you pay for a drug cov­er­age, Med­i­caid you pay noth­ing for drug cov­er­age. Part of So­cial Se­cu­rity pay­ments are tax­able in­come, wel­fare is not tax­able in­come.

Which one looks like the best deal: one you pay for, or one you get for free? No one talks about the peo­ple on So­cial Se­cu­rity/Medi­care since they have it made, liv­ing high on that hog, cor­rect? KEN SPAR­ROW Con­way

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.