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Can Your Elderly Loved One Get Medicare?

By Jennifer Thompson, 9:00 am on

Medical insurance can be a complicated process and it can become even more confusing when government benefits and regulations are involved. Anyone who qualifies for Medicare is automatically enrolled in the Part A plan that covers all hospital stays and hospice care, but seniors can also pay an optional premium to get the Part B plan for doctors’ visits and rehab. Here is how Nashville senior care providers can tell if their elderly loved ones are eligible for Medicare benefits.

Basic Qualifications

Generally, people only qualify for Medicare if they are over the age of 65 and are a United States citizen or a permanent legal resident of the United States for five consecutive years. In addition to being the right age and having the required residential status, either the Medicare recipient or his or her spouse needs to have paid Medicare taxes for ten years or more. People who meet all of these requirements qualify for coverage and their Part A premiums are completely waived.

Special Circumstances That Make a Senior Qualify

Even if your senior loved one does not meet the basic Medicare qualifications, he or she may still receive coverage. Seniors who are under the age of 65 or have not been paying taxes can still get Medicare if they are disabled and get either Railroad Retirement Board disability benefits or Social Security SSDI benefits. Seniors must get these benefits for at least 24 months before becoming eligible for Medicare, but back pay that seniors get as soon as they qualify for benefits does count towards the 24-month waiting period. Those who are getting dialysis due to renal disease or are on the waiting list for a kidney transplant will also automatically receive Medicare benefits.

What Causes Seniors to Lose Eligibility

If a senior was getting Medicare because they received SSDI or RRB benefits, they will lose eligibility if they stop receiving these payments. Some seniors who did not pay Medicare taxes can pay monthly premiums to use Medicare, but they will lose eligibility if they stop paying premiums.

It should be noted that Medicare only covers medical services, which excludes non-medical home care from coverage. However, there are other ways seniors can pay for home care through Home Care Assistance of Nashville. Other government assistance programs will help seniors pay for our comprehensive live-in, hourly, and respite care in Nashville. This financial assistance will help your loved one get the in-home assistance he or she needs to take care of things around the house including cooking, cleaning, laundry, errands, and so much more. Call Home Care Assistance today at (615) 656-4999 to learn more about our services and schedule a free consultation.