If you're new to Medicare, here are 4 steps to get you started:
Step 1: Sign up for Medicare
- If you don’t already have Medicare, find out if you’re eligible. You’ll get an estimate of these:
- When you’re eligible for Medicare
- Whether you’ll get Medicare Part A and Part B automatically or if you need to sign up
- Your premium amounts
- Learn about the different parts of Medicare, like Part A and Part B, and the specific services they cover.
- Decide whether you want Part B.
- If you don't get Medicare automatically, apply for Medicare online.
Step 2: Learn about your Medicare coverage choices, and choose your coverage
- There are 2 main ways to get your Medicare coverage— Original Medicare or a Medicare Advantage Plan (like an HMO or PPO). Some people get additional coverage, like Medicare prescription drug coverage or Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap). Learn about these coverage choices and 3 steps to help you decide how to get your coverage.
- If you have other health insurance, you can learn how Medicare works with other insurance. If you’re retired and have coverage from a former employer, there are 5 things to know about retiree coverage.
Step 3: Fill out an "Initial Enrollment Questionnaire" (IEQ)
About 3 months before your Medicare coverage starts, you’ll get an IEQ in the mail. It asks about other health insurance you have that might pay before Medicare does. Fill out the IEQ so your bills are paid correctly and on time. You can also complete the IEQ online at MyMedicare.gov.
You can get personalized health insurance counseling at no cost to you from your local State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP).