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3. Medicare: Compare plans.

(Whether or not receiving benefits from HP or HPE) 

Advice and reference info from members. (Updated Feb 23, 2020.)  Page updated often -- use browser refresh button to display latest version.

Questions or comments to: info@hpalumni.org

Depending on how you left and your years-of-service, HP Retiree coverage may not be best for you.

Trap: Carefully compare plan details:

From our discussions on the HPAA Benefits Forum, of the many factors involved in picking a retiree health plan, there are six key issues:

- Whether the plan has an annual out-of-pocket maximum or a lifetime cap. You could get wiped out financially by a major health issue.

- If you have pre-existing conditions.

- What medications you currently take. Can make a huge difference in your cost via co-pays.

- Other co-pays. For example, the co-pay for hospital stays can vary from zero to hundreds per day.

- Whether your current doctors -- and the hospitals and specialists they use (such as anesthesiologists) -- accept each plan.

- Dependent coverage. (For example, you may want to use an HP group Medicare plan because you have a spouse or child who is not of Medicare age.)

Check the Medicare assistance sites for your state.

- State Health Insurance Assistance Programs. State-specific SHIP websites with information about local, personalized counseling and assistance to people with Medicare and their families. SHIPs can help you with things like: Your Medicare questions, including your benefits, coverage, premiums, deductibles, and coinsurance. Complaints and appeals. Joining or leaving a Medicare Advantage Plan (like an HMO or PPO), any other Medicare health plan, or Medicare Prescription Drug Plan. Highly recommended by HPAA members.  https://www.shiptacenter.org

- Medicare Savings Programs. If you have limited income and resources, you can get help from your state paying some or all of your Medicare premiums, deductibles, and coinsurance. https://www.medicare.gov/Contacts/#resources/msps

- State Insurance Departments. Information about Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) plans sold in the state. https://www.medicare.gov/Contacts/#resources/sids

Links on the official Medicare site to other helpful contacts: https://www.medicare.gov/Contacts

Health insurance agents. Many do not qualify for a company health insurance plan -- or, even if they do, have low years-of-service such that they should consider non-company alternatives. An experienced independent insurance agent licensed to sell health insurance in your state can help you sort through the complexity -- and adds nothing to the cost of the plan you purchase from them.

 

Next step: 4. Medicare - HP  If receiving benefits from HP


For more mutual help on this topic and many others, join the independent HP Alumni Association. If you were formerly a regular, direct employee of HP or HPE -- or are in the process of leaving -- join HPAlumni via email. No charge, thanks to HPAA members.


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