North Dakota Medicare insurance is the affordable option for those requiring proper health insurance coverage in the US. But only people over the age of 65 and those with certain disabilities can avail of it. It’s a federally-funded program that the North Dakota government supports through public programs that offer financial and educational assistance.
Beneficiaries can obtain Original Medicare from the Medicare agency, and this provides coverage through Medicare Part A and Part B. Medicare Part A focuses on providing hospital insurance, which covers inpatient hospital care and similar services. Medicare Part B concentrates on medical insurance which covers medically necessary treatments, durable supplies, and screening measures.
Usually, beneficiaries do not need to pay a premium for Medicare Part A, although there are exceptions. Premiums are required for Medicare Part B, but the amount depends on the annual income of the beneficiary. An annual income of less than $85,000 results in a Part B premium of just $134 a month. That’s friendlier to the budget compared to the average $479 monthly cost of health insurance premiums for North Dakota.
Both Medicare Part A and Part B require beneficiaries to cover deductibles, copays, and coinsurance costs.
Supplemental Plans are those health insurance plans that can cover “gaps” in the main health insurance policy. This is why these plans are also referred to as Medigap. Plans such as these may be purchased by Medicare beneficiaries to cover the gaps in their Original Medicare coverage.
Among the most common of these plans cover the cost of Medicare prescription drugs, and these are called Medicare Part D. Other plans may cover other healthcare services that Original Medicare doesn’t cover. The Medicare supplemental plans may even cover the expense of deductibles and copayments required by Medicare Part A and Part B.
These plans will also require premiums, separate from the premium that the beneficiary will normally pay for Medicare Part B. These can be purchased from private carriers that are Medicare-approved.
These Medicare-approved carriers may also offer Medicare Advantage Plans, which provide a single comprehensive plan that offers the benefits of Original Medicare and supplemental plans. These plans are also known as Medicare Part C. A single Medicare Advantage Plan can provide the coverage of Part A, Part B, and Part D, plus extra healthcare services that are not covered by Original Medicare.
Medicare may be more affordable than average health insurance plans, but the program may still be too expensive for low-income residents of the state. North Dakota does have a poverty rate of 11.5%. For those whose household income and assets place them at or near the federal poverty level, the North Dakota Medicaid program offers Medicare Savings Programs (MSP) that provide certain levels of assistance. The level of assistance a beneficiary may receive from the MSPs will depend on how much they earn and how much they own in liquid assets.
For the Qualified Medicare Beneficiaries (QMB) program, eligibility for an individual includes a limit of $1,032 for their monthly income. For married couples, the combined monthly income cannot exceed $1,392. This program pays for virtually all the Medicare expenses, including the premiums for Part A and Part B along with the deductibles and copayments.
In the Specified Low-Income Medicare Beneficiaries (SLMB) program, an individual can qualify with a monthly income of less than $1,234. Married couples have a combined income limit of$1,666. This program pays for the Part B premium.
The Qualified Individual (QI) program limits individual monthly incomes to $1,386. Married couples cannot earn more than $1,872 combined. The program also pays for Part B premiums, but the funding for this program is more limited.
All of these programs have an asset limit that does not count the value of the house and the primary vehicle of the applicant. It counts savings and checking accounts, stocks, and bonds. The limit is $7,560 for an individual and $11,340 for a married couple.
North Dakota also has a program for Workers with Disabilities, and this has a limit of 225% of the Federal Poverty Level. For an individual, the income limit is $2,297 per month. For a married couple, it is $3,107 per month.
Every state is required to have a State Health Insurance Program (SHIP) to provide free and unbiased answers and counselling for Medicare applicants and beneficiaries. In North Dakota, this program is called the Senior Health Insurance Counseling or SHIC. Medicare beneficiaries can call SHIC at the toll-free number 888.575.6611.