Are you about to qualify for Medicare and are considering your plan options in Oklahoma? Medicare, the federal health insurance program, regulates premiums and helps people age 65 and over access quality healthcare services.
Read on to learn about your options in Oklahoma.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) reported the following information on Medicare trends in Oklahoma for the 2021 plan year:
- A total of 751,324 residents of Oklahoma are enrolled in Medicare.
- The average Medicare Advantage monthly premium decreased in Oklahoma compared to last year — from $16.43 in 2020 to $14.65 in 2021.
- There are 57 Medicare Advantage plans available in Oklahoma for 2021, compared to 44 plans in 2020.
- All Oklahoma residents with Medicare have access to buy a Medicare Advantage plan, including plans with $0 premiums.
- There are 11 different Medigap plans offered in Oklahoma for 2021.
Medicare is divided into several parts, each providing a different level of care.
Even if you’re automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A when you turn age 65, you’ll still need to manually enroll in other parts of Medicare Oklahoma.
Medicare Part A covers hospital expenses, including:
- inpatient hospital care
- short-term nursing home and skilled nursing facility care
- hospice care
- part-time home healthcare
Medicare Part B covers outpatient medical expenses not covered under Part A. It covers up to 80 percent of the following services:
- doctors’ visits
- preventive care
- certain screenings and tests
- mental healthcare
- durable medical equipment
Medicare Advantage in Oklahoma
Medicare Advantage (Part C) plans are offered by private insurance carriers. You’ll find a large selection of plans with several different premiums and covered services.
Medicare Advantage plans may offer some or all of the following benefits:
- all original Medicare coverage
- prescription drug coverage
- dental and vision coverage
- fitness programs or gym memberships
- adult day-care programs
These private insurance providers offer Medicare Advantage plans in Oklahoma with a wide range of premiums and a variety of coverage options to meet your health needs:.
- Aetna Medicare
- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma
- Lasso Healthcare
Plans vary by county, so when researching providers and plans, make sure to enter your ZIP code to find carriers that offer coverage in your area.
Medicare supplement plans in Oklahoma
Medicare supplement (Medigap) plans help cover the gaps in original Medicare coverage, like copays and coinsurance. You can purchase these plans in addition to having parts A and B.
Many companies offer Medigap plans in Oklahoma. In 2021, some of the companies offering Medigap plans throughout the state include:
Most people are eligible to receive Medicare coverage when they turn 65 years old. To be eligible for Medicare you must meet the following eligibility criteria:
- be 65 years old or over
- be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident of Oklahoma
You may also be eligible if you’re under age 65 and:
- you’ve received disability benefits for at least 24 months
- you have amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or end stage renal disease (ESRD)
When can I enroll in Medicare Oklahoma plans?
If you’re receiving Social Security benefits, you’ll be automatically enrolled in Medicare Oklahoma Part A
If you’re approaching your 65th birthday, you can enroll during your initial enrollment period. This starts 3 months before your 65th birthday and ends 3 months after your birthday.
During this period, you can research plans, decide if you want to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan in Oklahoma.
After the initial enrollment period, the best time to enroll in Medicare is during the annual enrollment period from October 15 to December 7.
You’ll have another opportunity to reevaluate your Medicare Advantage plan d from January 1 to March 31. In this period, you can switch between Medicare Advantage plans in Oklahoma or switch back to original Medicare, with or without part D coverage.
Were you unable to enroll during any of these periods? If you didn’t enroll in Medicare at age 65 because you still had employee benefits through work, you can qualify for a special enrollment period. When your job ends and you’re no longer receiving benefits from your employer, you can apply for the special enrollment period.
You may also get a special enrollment period if you move outside the coverage range of your current plan or you move into a nursing home.
Tips for enrolling in Medicare in Oklahoma
When searching for Medicare plans in Oklahoma, you’ll find you have lots of plan options. Narrow them down by following these tips:
- Start by calling your doctor’s office. Medicare Advantage plans in Oklahoma only provide coverage to network-approved doctors, so ask which Medicare plans in Oklahoma your doctor accepts.
- Make a list of all your medications. Advantage plans and Part D plans don’t offer comprehensive drug coverage but do provide a list (known as a formulary) of all the medications they will cover. Narrow your search by finding out what prescriptions are covered by each plan.
- Think about your current healthcare needs and what services you’d like to access. If you want more extensive coverage, consider an Advantage plan that will give you additional coverage.
- See what others have said about the plans you’re considering by checking each plan’s CMS star rating. Medicare provides a 1 to 5 rating of how well each Part C and Part D plan performed in the previous year. A plan with a 4- or 5-star rating was ranked highly by people insured with the plan.
You can find out more about original Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans in Oklahoma by using the following resources.
- Medicare: 800-633-4227. You can contact Medicare for help finding Medicare plans in Oklahoma, comparing plans, or accessing the CMS star ratings.
- Oklahoma Insurance Department: 800-522-0071. Contact the Oklahoma Insurance Department to learn about the Medicare Assistance Program, speak to a State Health Insurance Program (SHIP) counselor, and ask about Senior Medicare Patrol.
- Oklahoma Health Care Authority: 800-987-7767. The Oklahoma Health Care Authority administers SoonerCare, providing healthcare information to people who are 65 years old or older in Oklahoma.
- More than a 750,000 Oklahoma residents are enrolled in Medicare.
- There are several private insurance companies offering various types of Medicare Advantage and Medigap plans throughout the state.
- Overall, monthly premium costs have decreased for 2021 Medicare Advantage plans in Oklahoma.
- There are also several Medigap plan options if you live in Oklahoma and are looking for additional coverage.