What does Medicare Part B cover?
- Treatments and supplies that are medically necessary to either treat or diagnose
e.g. doctor visits, ambulance services, mental health services, physical therapy, outpatient care, home health care, chemotherapy
- Preventative health care
e.g. flu shots, screenings, tests
- Durable medical equipment
e.g. wheelchairs, portable oxygen equipment, walkers
What does Medicare Part B cost?
Medicare Part B Deductible
The Part B deductible for 2020 is $198.
Medicare Part B Premiums
If you receive benefits from one of the following, your Part B premium will be deducted from your benefit payment:
- Social Security
- Railroad Retirement Board
- Office of Personnel Management
Majority of people that pay a Part B premium pay the standard amount. In 2020, the standard amount is $144.60.
There may be an income related monthly adjusted amount (IRMAA) if the modified gross income on your tax return is above a fixed amount. This is shown in the table below.
Medicare Part B Co-insurance
For most doctor services, durable medical equipment (DME), and outpatient therapy you will pay 20% of the Medicare-approved amount after meeting your deductible. However, there are some services that you will pay nothing for, such as an annual wellness visit.
This 20% can get quite costly for things like chemotherapy and surgeries. There are Medicare Supplement Plans to help keep those expenses down.
What is the Medicare Part B Penalty?
There is the possibility that if you do not enroll in Medicare Part B when you first become eligible, you will have to pay a late enrollment penalty. The penalty is a 10% increase in your monthly premium for every full 12-month period you were eligible for Part B but did not enroll.
For example, if your initial enrollment was March 2018 and you did not sign up for Medicare B until May 2020, your penalty will be 20% of your premium for the two full 12-month periods you waited.
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