Choosing the Right Health Insurance for Retirees Over 65: A Step-by-Step Guide

Choosing the Right Health Insurance for Retirees Over 65: A Step-by-Step Guide

For many seniors, health insurance is a big reason why they remain tethered to their job even when they’re ready to retire. That’s because the cost of their current health plan often increases dramatically when they leave for good, and their retirement income is likely to drop. The result can be out-of-pocket medical expenses that aren’t covered by their new plan.

Fortunately, there are a number of options available for early retirees to get the coverage they need. One option is COBRA, which lets them continue their existing coverage for up to 18 months following a qualifying event such as a job loss, divorce or the death of a spouse. Another is purchasing private health insurance through the individual marketplace. This process can be similar to the way you shop for health care through your employer’s group plan, but it may have more plan options at a lower price than the employer-provided option.

A final option is to look for a Medicare Advantage or supplementalĀ Choosing the right health insurance for retirees over 65 insurance policy that covers the gaps in your current coverage. These policies typically cover out-of-pocket expenses like deductibles and co-pays, as well as preventive services and medications. Some of these plans are designed specifically for seniors, while others are more general in nature. Our top pick for Medicare Advantage is Aetna, which provides a variety of quality plans that cover all types of healthcare needs, including dental and vision. They also offer a wide range of budget-friendly supplemental insurance options that are highly rated by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

While a good health plan is essential for retirees, it’s just as important to keep an eye on your costs throughout the year. You should always be on the lookout for a better deal on your health insurance, especially during open enrollment each fall. This is when new plans with lower rates, higher benefits or both come on the market.

Keeping your eyes peeled for these opportunities can help you find the right health insurance at an affordable rate, regardless of when you decide to retire. It’s also a good idea to have a financial planner on your side, as he or she can help you estimate your potential out-of-pocket medical costs in retirement so that you know how much to set aside in savings. A financial planner can also recommend the best supplemental or Medicare Advantage plan to meet your unique coverage needs.