Category Archives: Medicare

Medicare Advantage Plan

Medicare Advantage Plan: When you are looking into Medicare for either diabetic supplies or any other type of health issue that requires monthly prescriptions you must know some things about it. First, you should recognize that there are so many parts of Medicare plans to choose from and while Part A and Part B are covered under the Original Medicare Plan, many people are looking further into other plans such as Medicare Advantage.

Medicare Advantage is a plan that allows for private health insurance plans inside the Medicare program to be chosen instead of standard Medicare plans such as Plan A and Plan B. Members will receive their health care needs from a private plan while Medicare pays a certain amount of money monthly. It does not matter if the member actually uses health care services that month or not.

With Medicare Advantage members are supplied with lower co-payment costs as well as extra benefits. However, just like with members who are on the Original Plans A and B, members must use doctors and hospitals that are located on the plan roster.

You do not have to do anything special or pay extra or have any special concerns to be part of Medicare Advantage, you just have to sign up for that particular plan. If you are eligible for Medicare Parts A and B than you are eligible for Medicare Advantage, as long as the pre-member lives in a area that is available for Medicare Advantage.  There are certain areas that do not have Medicare Advantage although the issue is currently being worked on to supply the plan to rural areas without it.

When it comes to the Medicare Advantage program, there are different ways that the program itself works. For instance, some private insurance plans will pay a certain amount of your Medicare A and B plans would. Others will pay the whole premium. Nearly all private insurance programs will cover drug prescriptions and many other benefits that are not covered on the Medicare Plan A and B.

Even if you chose Medicare Plan A or B in the beginning of choosing Medicare as your health provider, you can still switch Medicare Advantage as soon as you want to. Medicare Advantage is more helpful than other plans but can have unnecessary benefits if you are looking for something much simpler.

Check into the Medicare Advantage plan and remember that health care is always changing therefore the best thing that you can do is to keep yourself updated about Medicare changes and the best way to do that is by looking up updates online.

Therapeutic Shoes: Preventing Foot Disease

Therapeutic Shoes - Preventing Foot DiseaseThere are over 24 million Americans who have been diagnosed with diabetes and more than 25 percent of them will develop some sort of foot complications that may need to be amputated. Annually, 38,000 elderly individuals loose a lower appendage due to complications that derive from diabetes. This is why it has become important for anyone who has been diagnosed with diabetes to own a pair of therapeutic shoes. Therapeutic shoes can be expensive, no doubt, but if you have Medicare, then you could save a lot of money when you buy a pair.

Medicare Part B covers therapeutic shoes as long as your doctor prescribes them. Here are some issues that doctor’s look for when it comes to assessing your feet for the need of therapeutic shoes.

  • You must have diabetes type 2
  • You must have one of the conditions listed below
  • Calluses that could lead to foot ulcers
  • Partial or complete foot amputation
  • A history of foot ulcers
  • Nerve damage caused by diabetes
  • Deformation of the foot
  • You must be diagnosed with diabetes and are being treated under a diabetes care plan that states you need therapeutic shoes or inserts.
  • Medicare also requires that a orthotist, pedorthist or prosthetist fit and provide the needed therapeutic shoes

Therapeutic Shoes and Inserts Offered by Medicare
There are certain types of shoes and inserts, which are covered by Medicare.

  • One pair of depth-inlay shoes/ three pairs of inserts
  • One pair of custom-molded shows/ inserts
  • If wearing depth-inlay shoes due a deformity of the foot, than two you will receive two additional pairs of inserts.
  • On certain occasions that call for it, Medicare will offer to cover inserts or show mortifications instead of inserts.

There are ways that individuals who have diabetes can prevent the need for later amputation and one of those ways is by wearing the proper shoes. However, there are so many others ways that one can take care of their feet and it all starts with knowing exactly how. Here are some ways to protect your feet:

  • Wear therapeutic shoes
  • Diabetic shoes are made to provide comfort, enhance protection and help deflect injury.
  • Wear socks
  • Most people do not like to wear socks. However, socks can act as a buffer to stop scratches and scrapes that could ultimately lead to something bigger.
  • Follow your exercise and diet closely.
  • Skimping here and there is not good. So keep up the hard work to achieve great rewards.
  • Select some time throughout the day to inspect your feet.
  • Look for blisters, swelling, cuts and red spots. Make sure you check really well in between your toes. If you find an ingrown toenail, you should contact your doctor to find the best solution for removal.
  • Tell your doctor if something changes.
  • Your doctor should know the ends and outs of your foot. If it changes color, or feels unlike your foot or changes shapes than your doctor needs to know.
  • You should go for a yearly check-up, just for your feet.
  • Even if your feet feel great, you should still go for a yearly check-up. It is important to make sure you are not missing anything.
  • Your feet should be washed daily, patted dry and rubbed down with a mild lotion.
  • Do not put lotion in between your toes.
  • Keep your toenails trimmed and filed to prevent issues with toenails or scratching in the middle of the night.
  • Keep your shoes on; it is important that you never walk around barefooted.
  • If you just cannot stand to wear shoes, than slide into some socks. Nevertheless, never go barefooted.

These are all important tips to keep in mind when it comes to your feet. You are their protector and you can be a huge part of keeping them safe and from a harmful future. Take care of your feet.

Medicare Covered Diabetic Supplies

Medicare Covered Diabetic SuppliesThrough Medicare, many different kinds of diabetic supplies can be acquired and the cost to your pocket is substantially less than what you would pay outright for it, had you not had Medicare. Medicare will cover the cost of diabetic supplies as long as you have diabetes, you will have to produce a blood test in order to get things rolling, but once you have Medicare you will be able to obtain your supplies as long as your doctor prescribes your need for them.

Here are some things to keep in mind when applying for Medicare help for diabetic supplies:

  • Receiving Medicare through a Medicare Advantage Plan like HMO or PPO will have you follow a different method in order to obtain your supplies but once you have received all the paperwork from your plan, you will know exactly what you need to do.
  • For other Medicare plans, your doctor is the only person who can prescribe diabetic supplies for you. Ordering without a doctor’s prescription is a waste of time.
  • Your doctor not only has to write a prescription, they must also document a need for it through medical records and give you the prescription as well.
  • Once this has been completed, the supplier must receive that prescription before Medicare is billed.

List of Supplies Covered by Medicare:

Medicare Part B helps to cover many different supplies needed for diabetic patients rather they need insulin or not. However, for those who do use insulin the amount of diabetic supplies an individual has covered varies. Some individuals who use insulin could obtain 100 test strips and lancets monthly and one lancet device every six months. Others who do not use insulin may be able to obtain 100 test strips and lancets every three months and one lancet device every six months.

Insulin and Insulin Pumps
Medicare Part B will not cover insulin if it is not used with insulin pump; however, injected insulin is covered by Medicare Part D and can be supplied through that plan. All insulin and needed supplies such as needles, syringes, and gauze and alcohol swabs will be supplied. External insulin pumps including the needed insulin can be covered through Medicare Part B, as long as it is prescribed by your doctor. Typically, Medicare will pay 80 percent of the cost of the insulin pump itself.

Therapeutic Shoes
Foot disease is a growing problem with those who suffer from diabetes, especially for elderly people. That is why therapeutic shoes are so important and since they are covered on Medicare, there is no reason why no one who is suffering from diabetes cannot own a pair to keep future foot problems away. Medicare will not only cover the therapeutic shoes, they will also cover one pair a year and three pairs of inserts for them.

You know that Medicare will cover your diabetic supplies, but you should also know just how much they would pay. The amount that Medicare will pay depends on the type of coverage you have and where you are buying your supplies at, first you must realize that there is a yearly deductible, which must first be paid before Medicare will cover the cost of diabetic supplies. Once that is paid, you will then pay 20 percent of the approved diabetic supplies. The cost is cut down a certain amount if you choose to go with a diabetic supplier. However, if you received your Medicare through a Medicare Advantage Health Plan such as HMO or PPO, than you may end up pay a very small amount of even nothing at all for your diabetic supplies.

Your supplies are affordable but you should always do a little research when it comes to Medicare, new bills are always being passed on what Medicare will or will not cover and the more you know the better off you will be as a Medicare carrier.

Discovering Medicare and Diabetes

Discovering Medicare and DiabetesIf you have diabetes than you already know the financial burden test strips, lancets, monitors and control solution can leave on you. Monthly you shell out a few hundred dollars for all your test supplies and they just do not seem to last long enough before it is time to shell out another hundred dollars or so. It can be quite a pain in the bank but that does not mean it has to be.

If you have diabetes, there is a chance that you can apply for Medicare. Medicare will not only help you afford your supplies every month, it can also help with other supplies that could be needed in the future, such as a therapeutic shoe to prevent foot disease. There are several parts to Medicare, which you must understand before applying for it. Here they are:

Medicare Part A aka Hospital Insurance is helpful when you are a patient within a hospital; it can also be helpful in times of home health care, hospice care or to cover the expenses of a nursing facility.

Medicare Part B
aka Medical Insurance is helpful in covering expenses toward doctor’s bills or outpatient care bills. It can also be helpful to make sure that illnesses do not become worse than they are.

Medicare Part C aka Medicare Advantage Plans such as HMO or PPO, this is health coverage that is setup through private companies and assesses both Part A and Part B in order to cover the costs of prescription drugs.

Medicare Part D aka Prescription Drug Coverage is helpful in covering the high costs of prescription drugs. It can lower the cost of your prescription drugs and keep those high costs at bay in the future.
You can get many different supplies from Medicare. You may already qualify for these supplies if you are on Medicare or have a blood test showing you are a diabetic.

Here is a list of supplies covered by Medicare:

Most likely, you are thinking this all seems like a pretty good idea to save some money, but you may be asking yourself, “How do I get my supplies?” The answer is simple really; you can get your supplies a couple of different ways. One of those ways is through a Medicare participating provider such as a medical supply store or a local pharmacy. Another convenient way to obtain your supplies is by setting up a monthly delivery order, to your doorstep via the internet or snail mail through a diabetic supply company.

You should keep in mind when you order your supplies that you will need to ask for refills monthly, you will need a new prescription from your doctor to obtain additional lancets, and test strips yearly.

Becoming a diabetic and living with diabetes is hard as it is but knowing that you have full coverage when it comes to doctor visits, high cost drug prescriptions, hospital visits and even long-term nursing facility care, can make things a little better. Diabetes is a lot less of a struggle when you can afford the supplies you need to take care of yourself, look into Medicare today.

Can Medicare Cover Insulin Pumps for Patients with Type 2

medicare and insulin pumpsDiabetes can be hard to live with, it does not matter which type you have. It could be type 1, type 2 or gestational diabetes; they are all very difficult to live with. Type 2 diabetes however, is the most common diabetes out there among millions of Americans who have been diagnosed with it. Type 2 diabetes appears to be more common in Latinos, Native Americans, Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and African Americans.

A person who has type 2 diabetes is dealing with either a body that is unable to produce insulin or cells that ignore insulin. For the body to work properly, insulin is necessary. Glucose turns into energy, therefore any food that you eat will break down all the sugars and starches into glucose, which will in turn, fuel the cells in the body. Glucose can start to build up in the blood, rather than in the cells, which ultimately starts a long path of diabetes complications.

For those who have type 2 diabetes, the diagnosis used to be simple. Get plenty of exercise and watch what you eat. If you eat a lot of sugars and starches than the problem gets a lot worse. This diagnosis is fairly easy for many people and there are people who were pre-diabetic and seem to be handling life well at the moment by not showing any signs of becoming a full-blown diabetic. However, what happens when diet and exercise are not enough? What happens when a person has done all they can to help their blood sugar level out but it still skyrockets or drops suddenly, without much warning? For these individuals, it used to be a hard diagnosis to make, but now there is an easy answer and the answer is yes. Yes, a person with type 2 diabetes can be covered by Medicare when they need an insulin pump. However, just as if with any other diabetic supplies you need, you must have a prescription from your doctor.

Medicare used to only cover insulin pumps for patients who had type 1 diabetes, but since there is a growing issues with type 2 diabetes, there is a growing need for insulin pumps for patients who do not have type 1 diabetes are still battling insulin issues.

To receive a pump you must have to following:

  • Type 1 insulin-dependent Diabetes
  • Type 2 insulin-dependent Diabetes
  • Gestational Diabetes with a blood sugar that in uncontrollable.
  • Written prescription from your doctor
  • Medical records showing that you what you claim
  • Complete a diabetes education program
  • Completed a program of at least 3 daily insulin injections with frequent adjustments of insulin dosage for the past six months
  • Self-testing documentation for the past two months that shows four times a day testing

Once you are approved, for an insulin pump, you will save the most money if you go through a Medicare approved provider. When it comes to diabetic suppliers, they must meet a very long list of strict standards. It is possible to order your insulin pump from any store that sells that, however, if they supplier is not enrolled in Medicare, Medicare will not pay for the pump leaving you with the bill.