Hey Medicare Nation!
I receive many phone calls from clients, who say they were unable to schedule an appointment with a new doctor; even though they are on a Medicare Supplement Plan.
I made many phone calls, with my clients to physician offices, in order to fix these issues.
What I found out didn't surprise me.
Many of the staff at physician office's across the country are inadequately trained in the different types of Medicare Plans.
I decided to educate you on how to make an appointment with a physician, lab, hospital, SNF or radiology center, if you have a Medicare Supplement Plan.
Having a Medicare Supplement Plan allows you the freedom to see any physician or provider you want.....,as long as the provider "accepts assignment" with Medicare.
Let's take an example.
If you wanted to make an appointment with a new Cardiologist,
1. call the office you want to be seen in.
2. Tell the person, who is scheduling your appointment, that Medicare is your Primary Insurance.
3. You may be asked if you have a "secondary insurance." If you are enrolled in a Medicare Supplement Plan, the answer is .... "Yes, I have a Medicare Supplement Plan."
If you are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan, the Medicare Advantage Plan is your "Primary Insurance."
Most likely, you don't have another plan.
When you visit the physician's office for the first time, show the receptionist your Medicare Supplement ID Card. You may be asked if you have your Medicare ID Card. Hopefully, you've made a copy of your Medicare ID Card and have left your original Medicare ID Card at home in a safe place. You shouldn't be carrying your Original Medicare ID Card!
The staff will bill Medicare and the Medicare Supplement Plan for the amount you would have owed, if on Original Medicare.
You should not receive any paperwork to submit to Medicare or a Medicare Insurance Carrier.
Prior to any physician visits or procedures, call and ask if you have any co-pay, co-insurance or deductible if you are enrolled in a Medicare Supplement Plan that is not designated by the letter "F."
Medicare Supplement Plans are designated by Letters of the Alphabet and those "letter" plans can be offered by many different Insurance Companies.
Each "lettered" plan pays co-pays, co-insurance or deductibles, on your behalf, based on the plan you select.
After the physician's staff has your Medicare Supplement Plan info on file, they shouldn't require you to show them your card the next time you come in for an appointment.
Hopefully, this has helped you understand what is going on in the real world, and it will make it a less frustrating place for you!
Thank you for listening to Medicare Nation!
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