Beef Up Your TRS-Care Coverage (Part 2)
In Texas, retired teachers receive benefits through the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS), and Texas teachers’ healthcare benefits are administered through TRS-Care.
If you’re a retired Texas teacher wanting to get full benefit from your TRS-Care coverage, you should apply for Medicare as soon as you’re eligible.
For most Americans, eligibility begins at age 65. If you’re not disabled and your eligibility begins at 65, your initial enrollment period begins three months before the month you turn 65 and ends three months after the month you turn 65. If you become eligible for Medicare prior to reaching 65, you have a similar seven-month enrollment period starting three months before the month your Medicare eligibility begins.
Enrolling in Medicare is easy and begins with a visit here.
Your initial enrollment signs you up for Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Part B), which provides the foundation of your Medicare coverage. Medicare Part A helps cover hospital costs, while Medicare Part B normally pays 80% of the cost of covered medical expenses.
Once you are a Medicare recipient, Medicare will normally be the primary payer of your medical and hospital expenses. Because TRS-Care payments to healthcare providers are based on Medicare reimbursement, you’ll probably find it easier on your budget to see healthcare providers outside the TRS-Care network than would be the case if you didn’t have Medicare.
Although your initial enrollment signs you up for Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B, some people decide not to keep Part B coverage. If you’re covered by both Medicare and TRS-Care, the TRS-Care Group Plan Handbook advises that you shouldn’t drop your Part B coverage. TRS-Care will not take on primary payer status for anyone eligible for Medicare Part B, and TRS-Care will consider only 20% of the allowed charges for Medicare Part B services.
Any Medicare-eligible individual enrolled in TRS-Care can enroll on a voluntary basis in a Medicare Part D prescription drug plan.
TRS-Care offers a prescription drug plan as part of its health benefits packages for retired Texas teachers. With the cost of many prescription drug plans being through the roof, prescription drug plans can make a huge difference in the lives of retired teachers living on fixed incomes.
Though TRS-Care offers some good basic coverage to retired Texas teachers, did you know over two pages in the TRS-Care Group Plan Handbook are devoted to health services that aren’t covered by TRS-Care? If you’re a Medicare-eligible individual looking for ways to beef up your healthcare coverage, MedicareMall may just have some suggestions you need.
If you have any questions about Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Part B), Medicare Supplement Plans, Medicare Advantage, or Prescription Drug Plans, MedicareMall is at your service. For the best healthcare coverage at the very best price, why not give MedicareMall a call today?