Medicare in Idaho

Mike Olmos by Mike Olmos | Licensed since 2010
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This article was updated on: 09/16/2018

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While shopping for Medicare in Idaho, Medicare.com can be your resource for plan comparisons and other information.

About Medicare in Idaho

Beneficiaries in Idaho generally have two options when enrolling in a Medicare plan: You may enroll in Original Medicare, Part A and Part B, which is the federally funded health insurance program largely designed for those age 65 and older (though younger residents with certain disabilities may also be eligible). Or you may decide to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, which must offer everything that’s covered under Original Medicare (excluding hospice care) but can include vision, dental, and even prescription drug coverage.

Types of Medicare coverage in Idaho

Original Medicare, Part A and Part B, covers inpatient hospital insurance (Part A) and physician services, preventive services and durable medical equipment (Part B).

Medicare Advantage, also called Medicare Part C, is available through Medicare-approved insurance companies that are required to have the same coverage as Part A and Part B. Coverage and costs are likely to vary by county and by plan. You must keep paying your monthly Medicare Part B premium if you’re enrolled in a Medicare Part C plan.

Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plans provide prescription medication coverage. A Medicare beneficiary may enroll in this optional stand-alone coverage to work alongside Original Medicare, Part A and Part B. Another option is to enroll in a Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug plan and get all your Medicare benefits in a single plan.

Medicare Supplement insurance plans, also known as Medigap, cover out-of-pocket health-care costs that Original Medicare does not, such as deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance costs. Most states, including Idaho, offer 10 standardized Medigap policy options, each one marked with a letter. All plans of the same letter offer the same benefits, but not every company offers all 10 plans.

Local resources for Medicare in Idaho

  • Medicare Savings Programs in Idaho: Medicare beneficiaries in Idaho who have limited income may qualify for programs that provide help paying for Medicare premiums, copayments, and deductibles.
  • Idaho State Health Insurance Counseling and Assistance Program (SHIP): Senior Health Insurance Benefits Advisors (SHIBA) is part of a network of state health insurance assistance programs that give free help on a range of Medicare topics.

How to apply for Medicare in Idaho

To qualify for Medicare, you must be either a United States citizen or a legal permanent resident of at least five continuous years.

Medicare enrollment is the same in Idaho as it is in any state. Residents may be enrolled in Medicare automatically at age 65, provided they already receive benefits through the Social Security Administration (SSA) or the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB). Disabled residents can enroll before age 65 if they receive SSA disability benefits, or certain disability benefits through the RRB, for more than 24 continual months.

A Medicare card will arrive in the mail a few months prior to the Medicare eligibility date. If you have to enroll manually, you can visit your local SSA office or register online or over the phone.

  • Visit the Social Security website.
  • Call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY users should call 1-800-325-0778), Monday through Friday, 7AM to 7PM.
  • If you worked for a railroad, call the Railroad Retirement Board at 1-877-772-5772 (TTY users call 312-751-4701), Monday through Friday, 9AM to 3:30PM.

If you do not sign up for Medicare when you are first eligible, you may face a financial penalty for late enrollment if you choose to enroll down the line.

While weighing your Medicare plan options, I can help you find what’s available in your part of Idaho. To learn more about who I am, click the View profile link beside my photo below and check out my profile. I’m happy to walk you through your options or email you information; you can request that using the links below. To compare your choices right away, click the Compare Plans button on this page and view the plans offered in your part of Idaho.

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Mike Olmos |
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