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More than 2.3 million Illinois citizens, or 18% of the state’s population, were enrolled in Medicare in 2021. The state has required Medigap insurers to cover policyholders under 65 since the 1980s. Thanks to the recent ” birthday rule ” option, even more Medigap participants will be able to make changes to their plans after 2022, thanks to the recent “birthday rule” option.

Even with all these laws and plans in place, many people fail to enroll in the right plan. Or they get so overwhelmed by the hundreds of options that they don’t know where to start. This is why you need to trust a licensed Medicare insurance agent to handle all your health insurance needs.

Integrity Now Insurance Brokers know the ins and outs of Illinois Medicare plans and the different state laws that govern them. They not only narrow your options but also compare their prices and benefits to find a plan that fits your requirements and budget.

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Medicare Options in Illinois

Original Medicare

This is the standard Medicare that is governed by federal law. Original Medicare includes Parts A (hospital insurance) and Part B (medical insurance). Part A covers includes inpatient care, hospice care, and some home care and specialist nursing homes.

Part B deals with all your medical expenses. It covers doctor’s visits, outpatient care, preventive treatments, and medical equipment. Vaccinations and testing that help you stay healthy and safe from illness are also part of this plan.

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The Birthday Rule

Illinois passed a bill in 2021 establishing a new Medicare Supplement Annual Open Enrollment Period, which will be available in 2022. Even though enrollment capacity is limited, it offers coverage to age groups beyond those specified by the federal government.

According to this law, Medigap participants between the ages of 65 and 75 get an annual enrollment window to switch between Medigap plans. The enrollee’s current provider must offer the new plan, and it cannot carry more benefits than the previous plan. The 45-day window begins on the beneficiary’s birthday.

Since most beneficiaries under 65 enroll due to health conditions, insurers set higher premiums to account for the higher loss ratio. However, insurers can’t charge under 65-year-olds more than the maximum on-file rate for persons over 65. For instance, Medigap insurers could charge the same premiums for people aged 45 or 85. But they can’t have a completely different, higher premium rate for people under 65.

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Comparing Medicare Advantage Plans in Illinois

By 2020, 606,775 Illinois residents had enrolled in Medicare Advantage. A licensed Medicare insurance agent will make sure you choose a plan that covers all your needs, falls within your budget, and offers perks beyond its basic benefits.

Consider the following factors when evaluating your Medicare options:

Provider Network

Some Medicare plans require that you only refer to PCP, specialists, and other healthcare facilities within the plan’s network. If you choose any other option, you will pay those medical bills yourself. To keep these medical expenses at a minimum, make sure your doctors and hospitals are in the network.

Amount of Coverage Required

We always ask our clients about the goals they want to achieve with their Medicare plans. Medicare Advantage and Medigap plans often include additional dental, vision, and hearing benefits that the original Parts A and B aren’t covered. Our Medicare insurance agents then advise a plan that meets all their requirements.

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Freedom to Travel

Illinois residents who frequently travel outside of the state prefer travel plans that offer travel courage. Medicare plans often require that you stick to their provider network, while Medigap policies allow you to receive treatment anywhere. Find out how much travel coverage you need before deciding on a plan.

Medicare Eligibility in Illinois

You must be at least 65 years old to be eligible for Medicare benefits. In Illinois, people under 65 can also apply for Medicare supplement policies. Patients of chronic or incurable conditions, such as end-stage renal disease (ESRD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also qualify for Medicare at any age.

A senior couple enrolling for Medicare online

Medicare Enrollment in Illinois

Medicare will register you automatically if you have received at least four Social Security or Railroad Retirement Board payments before your 65th birthday. Otherwise, you can apply online or mail your application to your local Social Security Office. We recommend going the online route since it is a much quicker process.

Enrollment in Medicare is open during the following time frames:

Initial Enrollment

This is a 7-month window that includes the month of your 65th birthday, the three months before it, and ends three months after it. If you enroll before 65, your coverage will begin during your birthday month. If you register after this period, your coverage will be delayed.

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Why Should You Rely on Medicare Hope Insurance Agents?

At Integrity Now Insurance Brokers, we make sure our Medicare Insurance Agents are certified annually by America’s Health Insurance Plan (AHIP). We work with the elderly, youth with disabilities, and others who need help taking care of their healthcare expenses.

Medicare plans go through changes almost every year. New plans come in place, existing plans face adjustments, and states keep making legislative amendments to make plans more inclusive. Keeping up with all these changes can be overwhelming. That’s where we come in. Our insurance agents track all the developments in the industry, so you don’t have to.

A Medicare insurance agent with an elderly client

A Medicare insurance agent in Illinois will review your healthcare needs and weigh all your options. This includes figuring out if a Medicare Supplement Plan or a Medicare Advantage Plan is best for you.

With our guidance, you can compare quotes and find the best Medicare insurance plan for your needs. We have all the information you need to live a debt-free and stress-free life.

Call us to speak with one of our representatives and get started today!

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