How to Register for Medicare Express

Just the essentials...
  • There are eligibility requirements for Medicare Express, including an age requirement of 65 years and above
  • Medicare Express sections include Medicare Hospital Insurance, Medicare Medical Insurance, Medicare Express Advantage plans, and Medicare Drug Prescription
  • You can withhold your Medicare application due to employment and have an 8-month delayed period to enroll in Medicare B

Medicare Express health plan is a government initiative for persons aged 65 and over. Other persons under 65 years but with disabilities, individuals with final stages of renal disease and ALS patients are also eligible.

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Eligibility for Medicare Express

Requirements folder

Members must be:

  • An American citizen /permanent resident aged 65
  • A Railroad Retirement or Social Security benefits recipient
  • Eligible for RR benefits or Social Security
  • Eligible for Social Security payments due to spouse’s employment history, spouse must be at least 62 years
  • Working in the government as well as public institutions
  • Have a permanent disability, ALS or acute renal disease

Medicare Sections

Types of Medicare chart

A)  Medicare Hospital Insurance

Citizens aged 65, and above are eligible for free Medicare Hospital Insurance based on their employment status or that of their spouse.

B) Medicare Medical Insurance

Must be an American citizen or a permanent resident aged 65 years or older qualified for Medicare Part A and sign up in Medicare Plan B. where monthly payments are mandatory.

C) Medicare Express Advantage plans

Medicare Services approve Medicare Plan C registrations managed by health insurance companies. Applicants need not enroll at this stage. But must be registered in Plans A & B or Plan B-only. Members also qualify for Medicare Advantage Part C.

D) Medicare Drug Prescription Insurance

Medicare coverage also provides prescription drug part D coverage to its registered members under this category under the monthly payment plan.

Note: If you register for Medicare Part B and your spouse enrolls for Medicare A & B; you also have to register for the Plan A Medicare free of charge.

How Medicare Combines with Health Insurance

Terms and conditions written on a screen

Medicare Plans A & B cannot cancel out your private health cover. In fact, Medicare blends with your paid health Insurance policy to deliver a comprehensive medical cover. When registering in Medicare Plans A & B, Medicare pays for all your inpatient medical expenses; an external insurer or medical provider pays or other enhanced medical costs.

After registering in Medicare Express, you are required to make two individual monthly payments — one for a health insurance policy (given to the external insurer) and another payment for Medicare Pan B coverage (payable to Medicare Express).

The Importance of Registering in Medicare Plans A & B

Registration in Medicare Plans A & B is a gateway for eligibility for health covers sold by Insurance health providers. If you register in Medicare Plan A only, you will just access the Basic Medicare Hospitalization Plan. Plus any medical charges that Medicare pays for in the event of hospitalization.

Withholding Medicare Registration Due to Employment

Employed citizens under a medical group plan provided by the employer, may opt for late registration in Medicare Plans A & B or simply, Plan B. However, delaying registration has consequences such as the following scenarios:

  • An 8-month window period within which to enroll for Medicare Plan B
  • Signing up during the 8-month window period does not attract a late penalty fee

Medicare Before 65 

Citizens under 65 years are eligible for Medicare cover as a result of their disability status, acute renal disease, acute kidney failure, or the ALS through the social security benefit.

When to Register for Medicare

Medicare enrollment form

Citizens have an initial seven-month registration timeframe in which they should enroll for Medicare Plans A & B or only Plan B.

The open registration period commences for members who have three months to turn 65 years, including the birthday month.

The enrollment cutoff period is the three months following your 65th birthday. It is advisable to register in Medicare in the registration phase to evade inevitable delays in Medicare benefits.

Why You Should Avoid the General Registration Period?

Citizens who may have missed the first registration period may wait to enroll in the next scheduled registration from  January 1st to March 31st, during the annual national general registration period. However, your Medicare benefits will commence from 1st July, and a late penalty fee will apply.

Individual Registration

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Unregistered Members who delay signing up at 65years because of a group medical cover through your employer, you may sign up for Part B of the Medicare plan during the distinct enrollment phase. The individual registration lets you register without paying late penalty fees during:

The period of you or spouses’ group health policy or in the 8-month phase that the group health cover ceases or retirement kicks in. If you skip enrollment during the 32-week window period, the general admission rules apply.

How do you register for your Medicare?

Signing up for a Medicare plan is a natural process. But it might take a longer time to complete the whole submission process, start the procedure before turning 65 to avoid penalties and delays.

Enrolling in Medicare

For registration of the Medicare coverage, visit Social Security admin offices in your local area or call the Social Security free phone lines. Members who qualify for Medicare A & B may register on the website https://www.ssa.gov/.

When visiting the local SS office, carry the relevant paperwork to present during your appointment.

Evaluating your Medicare Plans

Your Medicare plan options are based on your qualifying status and your permanent residence. Medicare Plans include:

Paying your Medicare Part B Premiums

Medicare catalog

Recipients of the monthly Social Security, Railroad Retirement or Civil Service Retirement payment, will have their Medicare Part B premium deducted automatically from the retirement fund.

A different payment option is to automatically deduct Part B premiums through the Medicare Easy Pay plan, a free e-payment alternative from Medicare from your bank account.

Remember, to disburse your monthly Medicare payment before the due date to avoid cancellation of your coverage.

Medicare Late Registration Penalties

Delayed registration in Medicare B or D plans attracts a late fee from the Medicare Centre Services (CMS). Late fees attract an additional 10% of your monthly payments paid directly to Medicare or deducted from your Social Security account.

Medicare Surcharges for Privileged Incomes

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Medicare Part B and Part D citizens with higher annual incomes must pay the monthly Medicare surcharges. These vary by earnings levels set by Medicare. Over $84,000 for individuals and over $175,000 for couples Go to https://www.ssa.gov/ for further details.

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