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The Traps Within Medicare -- 2019 Edition: How to Spot Them, How to Avoid Them, and How to Optimize Your Healthcare at the Lowest Possible Cost (“Avoid the Traps” Series, Book 2)

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Medicare is a maze of pitfalls, traps and consequences wrapped in strange language and acronyms. This book will guide you over, under, around or through all of the traps lying in wait for you within the Medicare maze. In a short, enjoyable 2 or 3 hour read, you will gain an education about the problems and the solutions within the care and cost systems that many profession Medicare is a maze of pitfalls, traps and consequences wrapped in strange language and acronyms. This book will guide you over, under, around or through all of the traps lying in wait for you within the Medicare maze. In a short, enjoyable 2 or 3 hour read, you will gain an education about the problems and the solutions within the care and cost systems that many professionals struggle to comprehend. You will become a truly informed consumer, prepared to grapple with your own set of constraints as you pass the milestone of "Happy 65th!" Decisions you make at this critical time, when most new seniors are totally unprepared for the complexities ahead, will either help you or hurt you for many years to come. Many of those decisions are irrevocable. The solutions are affordable and relatively painless, for the well-informed. Read this book and find them. This is Rick Mortimer's third book on Medicare, fully updated for the 2019 plan year. His experience writing about this complex subject, along with his many years in finance and insurance, allow him to quickly get to the essence of each potential problem area, in simple language. Complexity and confusion are the earmarks of this system. Words often have quite different meanings than in simple English. One small example: the word "covered". When we're told that a procedure or treatment or visit is covered by Medicare, our normal English interpretation is that our costs are taken care of. This is not the case, not by a long shot. Covered, to the folks at Medicare, means that they will pay some part of the cost, leaving us with sometimes huge out-of-pocket expenses. And figuring out what part they will pay is also far from simple. To illustrate, consider the medical bills "covered" under Part B of Medicare, the piece that encompasses doctors' bills and outpatient treatments, for a common senior procedure -- a knee replacement. Most of these are now done in outpatient surgery centers, so your doctor will say, and Medicare will confirm, that an outpatient knee replacement is all "covered" by Part B. If you merely accept that language as plain English and assume that you can have the procedure without cost, you are in for a massive set of surprises. "Covered" under Part B means, at best, 80% of the costs are actually paid by Medicare. You pay a monthly premium of $135.50 in 2019 for Part B coverage. Then you pay a deductible, $185.00 in 2019, upon your first use of Part B benefits in the calendar year. But the biggest surprise of all is that you still have to pay 20% of ALL the Part B charges -- plus an additional (up to) 15% for "excess charges" if your doctor elects to bill you for more than Medicare will pay Run the numbers: costs for a knee replacement will vary widely with doctors, facilities, and your specific condition and complications. To get into the ballpark, we looked at some reputable websites for data. Howmuchisit.org quotes a range of $40,000 to $80,000, all-in. Healthline.com puts it at $57,000. These amounts do not include the extensive after-care required, including a lot of physical therapy, also covered by Part B. If nursing home or in-home health care is required for you, these charges may or may NOT be covered at all, but that's a subject for another discussion. We will be very optimistic and estimate that your final tally comes to $60,000, entirely "covered" by Part B. So before you get to skip on home from the outpatient center with your new knee, you will have to lighten your wallet by at least $12,185. Assuming that there are no complications. If the doc thinks his work is worth billing you excess charges, add many thousands more.


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Medicare is a maze of pitfalls, traps and consequences wrapped in strange language and acronyms. This book will guide you over, under, around or through all of the traps lying in wait for you within the Medicare maze. In a short, enjoyable 2 or 3 hour read, you will gain an education about the problems and the solutions within the care and cost systems that many profession Medicare is a maze of pitfalls, traps and consequences wrapped in strange language and acronyms. This book will guide you over, under, around or through all of the traps lying in wait for you within the Medicare maze. In a short, enjoyable 2 or 3 hour read, you will gain an education about the problems and the solutions within the care and cost systems that many professionals struggle to comprehend. You will become a truly informed consumer, prepared to grapple with your own set of constraints as you pass the milestone of "Happy 65th!" Decisions you make at this critical time, when most new seniors are totally unprepared for the complexities ahead, will either help you or hurt you for many years to come. Many of those decisions are irrevocable. The solutions are affordable and relatively painless, for the well-informed. Read this book and find them. This is Rick Mortimer's third book on Medicare, fully updated for the 2019 plan year. His experience writing about this complex subject, along with his many years in finance and insurance, allow him to quickly get to the essence of each potential problem area, in simple language. Complexity and confusion are the earmarks of this system. Words often have quite different meanings than in simple English. One small example: the word "covered". When we're told that a procedure or treatment or visit is covered by Medicare, our normal English interpretation is that our costs are taken care of. This is not the case, not by a long shot. Covered, to the folks at Medicare, means that they will pay some part of the cost, leaving us with sometimes huge out-of-pocket expenses. And figuring out what part they will pay is also far from simple. To illustrate, consider the medical bills "covered" under Part B of Medicare, the piece that encompasses doctors' bills and outpatient treatments, for a common senior procedure -- a knee replacement. Most of these are now done in outpatient surgery centers, so your doctor will say, and Medicare will confirm, that an outpatient knee replacement is all "covered" by Part B. If you merely accept that language as plain English and assume that you can have the procedure without cost, you are in for a massive set of surprises. "Covered" under Part B means, at best, 80% of the costs are actually paid by Medicare. You pay a monthly premium of $135.50 in 2019 for Part B coverage. Then you pay a deductible, $185.00 in 2019, upon your first use of Part B benefits in the calendar year. But the biggest surprise of all is that you still have to pay 20% of ALL the Part B charges -- plus an additional (up to) 15% for "excess charges" if your doctor elects to bill you for more than Medicare will pay Run the numbers: costs for a knee replacement will vary widely with doctors, facilities, and your specific condition and complications. To get into the ballpark, we looked at some reputable websites for data. Howmuchisit.org quotes a range of $40,000 to $80,000, all-in. Healthline.com puts it at $57,000. These amounts do not include the extensive after-care required, including a lot of physical therapy, also covered by Part B. If nursing home or in-home health care is required for you, these charges may or may NOT be covered at all, but that's a subject for another discussion. We will be very optimistic and estimate that your final tally comes to $60,000, entirely "covered" by Part B. So before you get to skip on home from the outpatient center with your new knee, you will have to lighten your wallet by at least $12,185. Assuming that there are no complications. If the doc thinks his work is worth billing you excess charges, add many thousands more.

39 review for The Traps Within Medicare -- 2019 Edition: How to Spot Them, How to Avoid Them, and How to Optimize Your Healthcare at the Lowest Possible Cost (“Avoid the Traps” Series, Book 2)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Ron Ickes

    Outstanding. This little book saved me literally Months of wading through conflicting answers from SHIIP, agents, websites, and especially Medicare itself!! I tried all that for several weeks, and my notes were so jumbled and contradictory, I felt like I was worse off than when I started. 2 1/2 hours with this book, and the fog has parted. I don't know how this guy knows all this, or especially how he made it so easy to understand the crazy-complex rules -- but he did. Get it, and save yourself Outstanding. This little book saved me literally Months of wading through conflicting answers from SHIIP, agents, websites, and especially Medicare itself!! I tried all that for several weeks, and my notes were so jumbled and contradictory, I felt like I was worse off than when I started. 2 1/2 hours with this book, and the fog has parted. I don't know how this guy knows all this, or especially how he made it so easy to understand the crazy-complex rules -- but he did. Get it, and save yourself the angst.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Russell

    When you are approaching your 65th birthday, start researching medicare. Decisions you make at the outset can impact the cost of your coverage for the rest of your life. This was OK, but in the end I went to a broker who could answer my questions. Medicare brokers aren't permitted to reach out to you--so you need to go looking for them, but it was worth the effort.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Chuck

    Great Medicare book As I get closer to Medicare age I continue to look for books that will help me better my understanding of the system so I can make good choices and this book is a very good continuation in my search. Great information and good resources.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Scott Holstad

  5. 4 out of 5

    Richard J. Ellerbach

  6. 5 out of 5

    allen garber

  7. 4 out of 5

    Tom

  8. 5 out of 5

    Monica

  9. 5 out of 5

    Steven L

  10. 5 out of 5

    tammy

  11. 4 out of 5

    Regina Maldari

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lawrence J. Compo

  13. 4 out of 5

    Lucien H. Chretien

  14. 5 out of 5

    George H Kariger

  15. 5 out of 5

    Theresa B. Darcy

  16. 5 out of 5

    Ronnie Foss

  17. 5 out of 5

    Mrs John Foley

  18. 4 out of 5

    CHARLENE FORTIN

  19. 5 out of 5

    J.R.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Btutner

  21. 5 out of 5

    Nancy Szolnoki

  22. 5 out of 5

    John Kraus

  23. 4 out of 5

    emily

  24. 4 out of 5

    Steve

  25. 4 out of 5

    Jill Hines

  26. 5 out of 5

    Ronald W. Young

  27. 5 out of 5

    Julee Barton

  28. 4 out of 5

    Rose Casella

  29. 4 out of 5

    judith king

  30. 5 out of 5

    Gus L.

  31. 4 out of 5

    Norman

  32. 4 out of 5

    Pete Bradshaw

  33. 4 out of 5

    Linda Bronisz

  34. 5 out of 5

    Noelia

  35. 4 out of 5

    patricia jeffreys

  36. 5 out of 5

    Sean Bailey

  37. 4 out of 5

    Bradley R. Nelson

  38. 4 out of 5

    Jimmie

  39. 5 out of 5

    John Kopecky

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