S.V. asks from Fort Worth, TX on June 13, 2008
Another Health Insurance Question for Ages 60-65
Hi all, I've read several other posts regarding people seeking health insurance, but it seems most are for families with small children. I'm actually seeking information for my parents who are almost 62 and 61.
It seems Unicare gets mostly bad reviews. Most of the other well known companies (Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Health Care, Aetna, etc.) are so expensive; have high deductibles; and either don't cover pharmaceuticals, or have very limited coverage.
Both of my parents take numerous medications for the usual age related symptoms, high blood pressure, diabetes (dad only), acid reflux, and I'm not sure what all else, so they are concerned they won't be able to pay for their medications (without coverage or w/limited coverage) in addition to the high cost of health insurance.
Does anyone have personal experience with obtaining decent insurance for people in this age group?
Also, does anyone have actual experience with the Ameriplan health discount plan? I've read their website, and can't find any specific information on the (discounted) rates doctors will charge for actual services.
Thanks ahead of time for your help!
R.L. answers from Dallas on June 16, 2008
My mother in-law is on AARP's medical plan....not sure how much it cost her (my sister-in-law pays for it), but it does cover most of her medicines. She has high blood pressure and has had colon cancer...that plus Medicare has covered just about everything. I work in the benefits department and when people are retiring and losing their medical from us, we suggest AARP too.
G.A. answers from Dallas on June 14, 2008
I was on Ameriplan and most doctors do not take it. It was costing me as a single $50 a month and blood work each month without insurance is $36 but they say it is over $50 and they paid about $14 of it costing me still $28. I quit them. Then I got into this HCCUA which is Health Care Credit Union Associatation. They cover great on prescription drugs but did not cover a mammagram or colonostomy or most of proceedures the doctors order. They do cover about three office visits a yr. Most medications cost me about $5 and one time I was new and did not have my pharmacy card and left a prescription and they told me it was about $40 and when I came back with the card it was only about $10 something like that. Most are about $5. It does not cover dental. I pay $160 for a single. It is insurance called Beech Street. One thing they also have two free airline tickets and other things in there. But does not cover a lot of other stuff. Hospital stays covers a little. So it is better then nothing and I can not find anyone to cover me because I had a stroke 10 yrs ago. I think it is better then Ameriplan too. If I could find their doctors maybe but gave up. The specialist my doctor sent me to did not use that card at all. G. W
D.S. answers from Dallas on September 01, 2008
Hey S.- I know this is a bit late- but maybe an Aflac rep may be able to help you- Michelle
She covers alot.
N.S. answers from Dallas on June 14, 2008
I have been an Independent Business Owner with AmeriPlan for over 2 years now. As you probably understand AmeriPlan is a discount medical benefits company and NOT insurance, so in some ways it is much better. Age or ongoing condition is not a factor. It's unfortunate that someone who responded to you did not find an AmeriPlan doctor. AmeriPlan adds new providers, literally, every day and it is also possible to request that AmeriPlan contact the doctor for participation if he is not on the list. There are very good incentives for the providers, as well.
The dental program for AmeriPlan is 16 years old and more established than the medical, which is only about 3 years old at this point. It takes time to grow a medicl provider base,but we're growing quickly.We actually have the largest discount provider base in the country.
Both your parents can be members, to include discounts on dental and medical, vision, prescriptions and chiropractic care for only $49.95/mo. The dental discounts are 20-80% off the dental service and the medical range is 25% to 50% and even more on lab and mail order medications. If your parents qualify within a certain income, they may also be able to get ALL of their medications (Brand name) for only $82/mo per person! I have helped many folks get affordable health care and I would be happy to answer any questions you may have on Ameriplan. We don't use "high pressure" sales tactics, so there is never any obligation and you will be able to help your parents make an informed decision about their health care. My local phone number is ###-###-#### or my website is www.Dental80off.com ~ N.
P.S. The May 2008 issue of Parents magazine lists AmeriPlan as one of the 3 top ways to save money on medical expenses and when compared with the other two, comes out on top as far as discounts.
M.H. answers from Dallas on June 14, 2008
I have had patients that have needed to get assistance from foundations for their meds. Some of these can be very helpful. YOu can google copay assistance on the internet and see what you come up with. I would stay away from Secure Horizons. Even though they have good copays and better copays for meds...if you ever have a life threatning illness, like cancer, you are most of the time stuck with 20% of the drugs needed to treat someone. Medicare and AARP help with regular medical and from what I understand AARP will pick up the 20% medicare doesnt cover, but this doesnt include meds. JPS is a good option, but I heard the waits at the clincs are long at times. Hope this helps and good luck
J.W. answers from Dallas on June 14, 2008
This is hard to deal with but I suggest get into the JPS plan if they live in Tarrant County, they need to be low income. They also might qualify for Medicaid if income is low. If they have both Medicaid will pick up their copay. J.