Medicare plans can be a helpful contribution to your retirement. But, they are also highly complicated and confusing to understand, and getting it right is hard. So hard, in fact, that most people with Medicare are on the wrong plan! With this in mind, we thought we would take a closer look at how you can understand a little better. Keep these tips in mind and you will make Medicare work for you properly.

Time To Learn

Because it is complicated, it’s going to take a while to understand Medicare. As not everyone has the benefit of being able to pay a tax specialist, so you may need to do it yourself. It’s important, then, to put in a significant amount of work beforehand. As you approach the retirement age, try and set aside some time to learn about Medicare. Find out what each of the plans will give you and compare them to any private insurance you have. There are plenty of resources out there, all available for free. Without a deeper understanding of Medicare, you just won’t be able to guarantee you are on the right plan.

Do The Math

You are going to need to work out the figures to work out your options. Look at Medicare as a cost per year and try and estimate how much your medical bill will come to. Of course, you can’t account for an illness you haven’t had yet – which is part of the problem for many on Medicare plans. But, it’s still important to work on the math, as you can come up with a rough estimate and find the most beneficial plan. Again, it’s vital that you take your time when adding up the figures. It’s where the vast majority of people get their Medicare wrong, and it can end up costing you a small fortune.


Speak With Your Doctor

Make sure your doctor accepts your Medicare cover – not all of them will. Just like with your health insurance, you will have a limited choice of physicians you can use with Medicare. If your doctor does not accept Medicare patients, you will have to find an alternative that does. Again, it can take some time to find someone you are happy with, so start your search long before your plan begins. For many people this can be a difficult move. You might have had the same doctor for many years, and feel entirely at ease with them. If you feel that you could not see another doctor – as is the case for many people – why not speak to them? They might be willing to enter the Medicare scheme, or at least recommend a colleague that they know will earn your trust.

Explore Other Options

It’s important to understand that Medicare won’t cover you for everything. According to, this can cause a few problems. You will need to find a way to fill these coverage gaps, and look for supplemental Medicare plans, too. There are a variety of different supplemental plans to choose from, the cost of which can differ depending on age and current health status.


Think About Joint Plans

While you are working it is quite common to be on the same plan as your spouse. However, moving to the same Medicare plan may not work as well for you. Take drug plans, for example. Every drug plan is likely to be different, chosen solely on the medication you are taking – not what you are both taking. It is likely to be completely different treatments, which will affect your ability to claim for the right medication. So, by all means take out a joint plan with your spouse, but if either of you is on medication, you will need to have different options. Otherwise, you will end u not getting the right coverage, and spending more money than you should on your treatment.

Ask For Help

If you can afford it, it is advisable to work with a tax or insurance professional. However, as this is not an option for everyone, don’t be afraid to swallow your pride. Ask for help from your family, friends and neighbors, particularly if you are confused. There is plenty of Medicare help online, too. Other help is also available. For example, it’s worth checking with to see if you are eligible for help paying for your costs.

We hope this guide has helped you understand how to make Medicare work for your retirement. Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below – and have a healthy retirement!