Sorting through Medicare options can be confusing and overwhelming. Ochsner is here to help you pick the best plan for you. Here we answer the most common questions to help you make the right decision.
*Benefits listed not offered on all plans.
What is a Medicare Advantage plan?
Also known as Part C, Medicare Advantage plans are offered by private insurance companies and include Part A and Part B coverage. A Medicare Advantage plan can also provide more benefits* than traditional Medicare, including:
- Lower copays
- Preventive coverage
- Prescription drug coverage
- No deductibles
- Gym membership to Ochsner Fitness Center at no additional cost
- Coverage when traveling in the U.S. and overseas
Which Medicare Advantage plans does Ochsner Clinic accept?
Ochsner Clinic accepts four health plans that offer several Medicare Advantage plans:
- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana
- Ochsner Health Plan
- Peoples Health
Patients with traditional Medicare and Medicare supplement plans can also receive care at Ochsner.
I'm New to Medicare. What should I know?
To enroll in Medicare, you may need to contact Social Security directly. It’s recommended you do this before your 65th birthday to avoid lapse in coverage and avoid any penalties for signing up late. You should receive a packet in the mail from Medicare before you turn 65. You have the option to enroll online, in person at the Social Security office, or by calling 800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) between 8:00 am – 5:30 pm. Monday through Friday.
You have a 7-month window around your 65th birthday to enroll; this is called your initial enrollment period. After that, you can still enroll in Medicare, but may need to wait for a designated special/annual election period to do so based on life events such as moving, loss of coverage or opportunity to get other coverage.
Does Medicare Advantage cover screenings and preventive care?
Yes. A Medicare Advantage plan focuses on preventing disease and keeping you healthy with preventive care. Ochsner shares this focus. We offer a wide range of primary medical care and health screenings.
Are prescription drugs covered?
While original Medicare covers a limited number of medications, many Medicare Advantage plans offer prescription drug coverage.
Is a gym membership included?
Many Medicare Advantage plans offer gym memberships or fitness programs as part of their benefits package at no additional cost, while original Medicare does not.
Will my plan cover me when I travel?
Medicare Advantage plans can provide coverage when traveling overseas to fill the gap in coverage by original Medicare. In most cases, original Medicare only covers you when traveling within the United States and its territories.
Why should I choose an Ochsner-accepted plan?
As the largest health system in the region, Ochsner gives you access to a network of expert providers in over 90 specialties, and our numerous convenient locations ensure you’ll find one close to home. Plus, all Ochsner doctors will be considered in network.
When you receive all your care at Ochsner, you can trust that your team is working from a single medical record to understand your needs. This coordinated system of care gives our physicians 24/7 access to your complete medical history, meaning fewer duplication of tests and lower healthcare costs for you.
When can I enroll in a plan?
The initial Medicare enrollment period lasts seven months. You can sign up for a Medicare Advantage plan three months before you turn 65, the month of your 65th birthday and for three months after you turn 65.