Hi, I am Matthew Claassen with MedigapSeminars.org If you’re healthy and you don’t have any prescriptions when you turn 65 should you still purchase a prescription drug plan, a Medicare Part D plan? We’re going to try and help you answer that question in this video. MedigapSeminars.org An independent insurance broker specializing in Medicare. So here’s the scenario; you are turning a 65, you’re healthy. You don’t see the doctor very often and you have no prescription medications. Should you get a prescription drug plan? It’s a fair question and we actually get that all lot. Here’s what we believe that you should be looking at. First off, the penalty for not getting a prescription drug plan is relatively small. It’s 1% of the national base average premium for every month that you go without after your first 63 days. You can go 63 days without it. After that it’s 1% per month of the national base premium. That is an amount of money that’s worth considering if you consider that the average share a premium year and in 2017 its $35.63 Well that means if you go the entire year without of any prescription drug plan then you’re going to have a net increase of about $4.20 a month for the rest of your life for the prescription drug plan when you purchase it That continues to add up. I’ve seen cases where the persons penalty is equal to the the amount of premium they normally pay. So they have doubled their prescription drug plan premium. Either way, it’s not an amount of money that would typically break a person’s bank. It’s a nuisance, It is easily avoidable. But it’s not the only factor that you should consider. So while the cost of the of financial penalty is worth considering, it’s not the greatest cost that you should keep in mind. Once you have enrolled in Medicare you can’t purchase a non-Medicare prescription drug insurance plan. No one’s allowed to sell it to you. That means that once you have passed your initial enrollment period, Unless you have employer coverage or other creditable coverage, assuming you don’t have that Then you can only purchase your prescription drug plan during the annual action period. (Oct 15 – Dec. 07) to start in January. So you can select a plan in October or November up to December 7 to start the following January 1. That is your choice. Once you’re eligible for Medicare no one can sell you a prescription drug plan that is not a Medicare plan. No one can sell you prescription drug insurance other than a Part D plan. You can only purchase your Part D plan to start in January. You have the annual election period; between 15th and December 7. You can choose a plan then to start in January. Here is the problem. What happens if its February March April you have no Medicare Part D plan because you are healthy you come back from the Doctor visit because you had a nagging back, or a stomachache or some other ailment and the doctor says you have cancer. Or maybe you have not been feeling well and you’re kind of tired and not sure was going on and you have an of autoimmune disease. Or your joints are hurting and you have arthritis. Any of these common ailments that will happen to people over 65. You can’t get prescription drug coverage until the next January. Here is the scary part; you may be facing prescription drug costs that are in the tens of thousands of dollars. The average prescription drug, when you do not have insurance, the average prescription drug costs for cancer is $10,000 a month. There are some cancers where it’s easily closer to a half million dollars for the treatment. If you have arthritis you can easily be spending $5,000 a month if you don’t have insurance. And the same with many of your autoimmune diseases, depending on what condition you have. This is a table here that was put together by the Kaiser family foundation. This is done in 2016 and is the the average out of pocket prescription drug costs for people that have a Medicare Part D, where party is already paying 95% of the cost. These numbers are the 5%. It’s what you have to pay if you have a Medicare Part D plan. Imagine what you’re going to pay if Medicare isn’t there to absorb the 95%. So, it’s not the financial penalty. it really comes back to the very basic question; why do we have insurance in the first place? I can only answer for myself, but for me I have Health Insurance so that no medical event is going to financially burden me or my family. It is not going to disrupt our quality of life. It might be a pain to have to pay a few medical bills, but it’s not going to be so much that it actually changes that the quality of life I have. If you had to pay those bills and the tens of thousands of dollars you have to yourself, when you’re considering whether not have a Medicare Part D plan is; can you absorb the thousands of dollars that you may be liable for if you get sick? Is that going to have a negative impact on your life? That’s a question only you can answer Just understand that the the risk to you and your family goes well beyond of minor financial penalty that Medicare imposes. If you like this video please press the like button and share and Subscribe to our channel. When you press the LIKE button you make it easier for other people that have the same questions you do, to find this video. We also have an entire library of educational free Medicare videos. If you the subscribe to the channel you’ll be able to see them. You can also find them on our website of MedigapSeminars.org. Look for the OnDemand Vidoes tab. I am Matthew Claassen with MedigapSeminars.org Thank you for watching. 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