October 17, 2008, Newsletter Issue #176: Eligiblity for Medicare

Tip of the Week

In order to be eligible for a Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit, you must first be eligible for Medicare.

Generally, you are eligible for Medicare if you or your spouse worked for at least 10 years in Medicare-covered employment and you are 65 years old and a citizen or permanent resident of the United States. You might also qualify for coverage if you are a younger person with a disability or with chronic kidney disease.

Here are some guidelines:

You can get Part A at age 65 without having to pay premiums if:

* You are already receiving retirement
benefits from Social Security or the
Railroad Retirement Board.
* You are eligible to receive Social
Security or Railroad benefits but
have not yet filed for them.
* You or your spouse had Medicare-
covered government employment.

If you are under 65, you can get Part A without having to pay premiums if:

* You have received Social Security or
Railroad Retirement Board disability
benefits for 24 months.
* You are a kidney dialysis or kidney
transplant patient.

General enrollment for medicare is January 1 through March 31. You may be auto-enrolled approximately 3 months before your 65th birthday, or you may need to apply.

Since Medicare plays such an important roll in your diabetes management supplies, it is vital that you do not delay in getting registered. Contact your local Social Security Office for more information.

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