Are you retiring or a retired person? Do you not know how to make most of your healthcare spending? AARP medicare got you covered! Read the full article to learn more about this.
AARP, formerly called the American Association of Retired Persons, was founded by San Francisco-born Ethel Percy Andrus in 1958. It offers programs to help people aged 50 years old or older be informed and independent. Although AARP is not an insurance company, it provides healthcare insurance plans through United Healthcare.
UnitedHealthcare is dedicated to helping people live healthier lives and making the health system work better for everyone. They serve millions of people from their earliest years through their working lives and retirement.
To understand AARP Medicare, one must have enough know-how about Medicare. Medicare is an individual health insurance plan especially designed for US citizens and other individuals based on the eligibility criteria, i.e., age, disability, or qualifying medical condition. Medicare coverage includes Medicare Part A and Part B (Original Medicare) offered by the federal government, and Medicare Advantage (Part C) and Part D prescription drug coverage.
Private insurance companies offer Medicare Advantage (Part C) and Part D prescription drug coverage. Moreover, private insurance companies also offer Medicare supplement insurance (Medigap) plans and help pay for out-of-pocket expenses that Medicare Part A and Part B do not pay.
There is plenty to learn about AARP medicare. This article will help you understand the basics of this plan, coverage options, enrollment procedure, and more. Let’s get started!
What is aarp medicare?
AARP is a plan specifically designed for older people and those with disabilities. Although AARP is not an insurance company, it offers healthcare insurance plans through United Healthcare. AARP partners with UnitedHealthcare (UHC) to provide several types of Medicare plans, including Medicare Advantage (Medicare Part C) and Medicare Supplement Insurance (also called Medigap) plans.
AARP’s mission is to empower people to choose how they live as they age. For $16 a year, AARP provides access to hundreds of benefits that help you live your best life. From health and financial tools, volunteering opportunities, travel, and restaurant discounts, to everything in between, AARP aims to enrich the lives of people over 50 years.
Parts of medicare plans
Since the inception of the Medicare program in 1965, its benefits have expanded along with many beneficiaries. It now covers more than 65 million senior citizens of the US and 9 million disabled people. There are four parts of the Medicare plan that you can avail of as per your requirement.
Part A (Hospital Insurance)
Part A helps pay for the cost of inpatient stays in hospitals and short-term skilled nursing facilities, home health services, and hospice care.
Part B (Medical Insurance)
Part B of the Medicare plan helps pay for doctors’ services (including those in the hospital), outpatient care (in or out of a hospital), diagnostic tests, preventive care, and medical equipment and supplies.
Part C (Medicare Advantage Plan)
Part C, or Medicare Advantage, is an alternative coverage option to original Medicare that allows you to choose to receive all of your Medicare health care benefits through one plan. These plans cover all Part A and Part B services, including Part D drug coverage. Some plans also provide extra benefits that Original Medicare does not offer.
Part D (Prescription Drug Coverage)
Part D of the Medicare Plan helps cover the cost of outpatient FDA-approved prescription drugs.
AARP is a nonprofit organization for Americans nearing the age of retirement. Members receive discounts on everything from healthcare and travel to financial services, shopping, and entertainment. The group also provides advice on careers, caregiving, and other topics essential to people 50 and over.
Availing AARP membership is not tricky. You only have to visit their site, enter the required information, and choose your membership term.
How old do you have to be to join aarp?
All people aged 50 and older are eligible for full membership with AARP. As an AARP member, you will get a free secondary membership for your household, access to hundreds of carefully chosen discounts, programs, and services, AARP The Magazine, and much more.
Members under the age of 50 will get access to all of the great benefits attached with a membership except for those restricted by vendors.
How much does it cost to join?
AARP membership is as low as $12 for your first year with automatic renewal and $16 per year afterward; it is risk-free, and you can cancel it anytime. AARP also offers multi-year membership plans. You can save 10% off the annual rate if you sign up for three years and 21% if you enroll in a five-year membership term.
AARP medicare providers
For your convenience, here’s how we stacked up the AARP medicare providers besides UnitedHealthcare. Let’s have a brief definite overview of the providers.
Kaiser Permanente consistently received top ratings for its individual insurance and Medicare plans, often ranking far ahead of any competitors. It has a unique model of having insurance and medical care as branches of the same company.
It is excellent for those who need streamlined experience between health insurance and health care, but these policies are not a good fit for those who want flexibility when choosing their health care providers.
Kaiser Permanente is the best Medicare Advantage provider as Medicare.gov., consistently rated 5 out of 5 stars in these plans. Kaiser Permanente’s Medicare Advantage plans are suitable for those willing to pay for a more expensive plan to get affordable medical care and good benefits. In general, enrollees will spend less on health services while having the predictable, but more expensive, the monthly cost of the Medicare Advantage plan.
Kaiser Permanente offers health insurance plans in eight states and the District of Columbia. This includes areas on the Pacific Coast, the Mid-Atlantic region, and more.
The company stands out for its broad range of additional programs and discounts, including vision, dental, free gym memberships, mental fitness, and credit toward over-the-counter products. These programs are beneficial for those who want to stay healthy on a budget.
AARP/UnitedHealthcare is the most popular Medicare Advantage provider, with many enrollees valuing its combination of good ratings, affordable premiums, and extra benefits.
Aetna offers Medicare Advantage and Supplement policies to people currently enrolled in Medicare parts A and B, and it will cover gaps in your Original Medicare plan. Aetna Medicare Advantage plans come in three types: PPO, HMO, and HMO-POS.
Aetna’s Medicare Advantage plans stand out for those looking for affordable coverage. Most plans are available for $0, which means you do not have to pay anything on top of your monthly cost for Original Medicare.
Aetna’s Medicare Advantage plans may be cheap; however, they offer additional benefits, making them a good value. Its coverage usually includes dental, vision, hearing, prescription drugs, SilverSneakers, caregiver support, and over-the-counter health items.
Blue cross blue shield
Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) has one of the largest provider networks, making it a good choice for those seeking flexibility about doctors and medical facilities they use. This makes BCBS Medicare Advantage plans a perfect choice for those who want the flexibility to get care from many doctors and medical providers. Not only can this help you see doctors you like, but the vast network is beneficial for those who need specialized health care.
Humana Medicare Advantage has the best customer satisfaction for mail-order prescription customers. Humana is a large Medicare Advantage provider with popular plans and many options. The range of plan options is a great advantage for those looking for the right balance between coverage and cost.
Supposedly, you can choose a cheap HMO plan like the Humana Gold Plus, with low monthly costs. However, coverage with an affordable plan will not be as good as Humana’s more expensive plans with better benefits and a more comprehensive selection of medical providers.
Aarp medicare claims
If you are using a health plan under AARP medicare, you must wonder why and how you need to file a claim? It is by law the responsibility of Medicare providers, for example, hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, home health agencies, and physicians who accept assignments to submit any claims directly to Medicare for covered services provided to Medicare patients.
However, there are situations in which you may need to pay a physician who does not accept assignment and then submit your claim for reimbursement to Medicare, using form CMS-1490S.
You can usually submit your UnitedHealthcare AARP medicare claims by following two steps:
- Sign in to your health plan account, go to the “Claims & Accounts” tab, then select the “Submit a Claim” tab. You will choose the medical claims submission form to download and print there.
- After you print and complete the medical claims submission form, mail it with the claim details and receipts to the address on your health plan ID card.
What do aarp medicare advantage plans from unitedhealthcare offer?
When it comes to Medicare, senior citizens have plenty of different options. One of these options is a Medicare Advantage plan. Medicare Advantage plans, also known as Medicare Part C, combine Original Medicare (Parts A & B) into one plan and include additional benefits. Medicare-approved private insurers, like UnitedHealthcare, offer medicare advantage plans.
UnitedHealthcare offers a broad range of Medicare Advantage Plans to match your health and budget needs. UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage (Part C) plans, including the only plans with the AARP name, offer consumers more for their Medicare dollar, offering benefits and services beyond original Medicare. Most Medicare Advantage plans include coverage for prescription drugs.
When you choose a Medicare Advantage Plan from UnitedHealthcare, you receive more for your Medicare dollar. It gives consumers more care for less, more of the extras they need, and more peace of mind. Therefore, you can rely on America’s number one Medicare Advantage plan provider to deliver lower out-of-pocket costs and more high-quality care, whenever, wherever, and however you need it.
Medicare advantage plan offered by unitedhealthcare
AARP/UnitedHealthcare is the most popular Medicare Advantage provider, with many enrollees valuing its combination of good ratings, affordable premiums, and additional benefits.
For many people, AARP/UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage plans fall into the sweet spot for having good benefits at an affordable price. UnitedHealthcare (UHC) administers the AARP Medicare Advantage plans, which offer good benefits and a vast network of providers. There is also the option to get a PPO plan for better access to out-of-network care.
The company stands out for its broad range of add-on programs and discounts, including vision, dental, free gym memberships, mental fitness, and credit toward over-the-counter products. These programs can benefit those who want to stay healthy while on a budget.
AARP’s prescription drug benefits are middle-of-the-road for most people, with a typical drug deductible being about $139. However, many plans help those who need expensive medications during the coverage gap. This is a significant benefit that can protect those with high prescription drug costs from paying more for medicines at some point in the policy year.
AARP Medicare Advantage plans have some downsides, and a high percentage of enrollees are unhappy or frustrated with their plans. According to J.D. Power’s Medicare Advantage survey, UnitedHealthcare falls short on customer satisfaction. The company ranked in the bottom third among the nine providers analyzed. Moreover, UHC has 22% more complaints than is typical for its size, according to the complaint index by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).
Medical benefits under aarp medicare advantage plans from unitedhealthcare
When you choose a Medicare Advantage plan from UnitedHealthcare, you get more for your Medicare dollar. UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage plans contain the features and benefits you need to help you live healthier.
- Telemedicine (virtual visits)
While AARP Medicare Advantage Plans from UnitedHealthcare come in various forms, most offer prescription drug coverage. Additionally, many AARP United Healthcare Medicare Advantage Plans also provide the following other medical benefits:
- $0 copays for in-network primary care provider visits
- $0 copay for many lab tests
- $0 prescription drug copays for most common prescription medications
- $0 copay to speak to an in-network healthcare provider using 24/7 telehealth services
These benefits are not available in all plans. You can check the specific plan details of the policies in your region using the official AARP website for Medicare plans.
Non-medical benefits under aarp medicare advantage plans from unitedhealthcare
The non-medical benefits that AARP Medicare Advantage Plans from UnitedHealthcare offer helps to promote overall health. According to the official AARP website for Medicare plans, most AARP Medicare Advantage plans include the following non-medical benefits:
- Fitness Programs: Renew Active is a free fitness program designed to help you stay active through the gym and home activities.
- Dental Benefits: $0 copays for in-network exams, yearly x-rays, and routine cleanings. Many plans also offer coverage for fillings, crowns, bridges, dentures, and certain kinds of root canals.
- Vision Benefits: $0 copays for routine eye exams and eyewear allowances for contact lenses or frames, with full coverage for standard lenses.
- Hearing Benefits: $0 copays for routine hearing assessments, plus savings on name brand and UnitedHealthcare exclusive hearing aids.
Social determinants of health play a pivotal role in health outcomes; therefore, UnitedHealthcare’s AARP medicare advantage plans help their members lead a healthier life by eliminating barriers that discourage innovative and non-medical benefits.
What aarp medicare advantage plans are offered in 2022?
Each plan that AARP offers comes with different costs and benefits. Before enrolling in a plan, you must carefully review the benefit summaries and plan documents. There are various AARP medicare advantage plans for consumers. Here is a brief overview of each plan offered to consumers in 2022.
AARP hmo plans
AARP medicare advantage offers a wide range of Health Maintenance Organization plans to seniors. You must choose a primary care physician from the plan’s physician directory with an HMO. This provider will be the point person for most of your care. If you have to see a specialist, you will usually need a referral from your primary care doctor.
Most AARP Medicare Advantage plans have a few exceptions to this rule. If you need flu shots, vaccines, or preventive women’s healthcare services, you may receive them from a specialist without a referral. In an AARP Medicare Advantage HMO, the plan will not cover medical care from out-of-network healthcare providers unless:
- It is an emergency.
- Medicare requires the plan to cover the care you need, but no providers offer that care in your network.
- You need dialysis and traveling outside the plan’s service area.
AARP HMO D-SNP plans
AARP Medicare Advantage offers HMO Dual Eligible Special Needs Plans (D-SNPs) in many locations. AARP created this plan, especially for eligible people for Medicare and Medicaid.
Most HMO D-SNPs have no premiums, deductibles, or copays. They offer several significant benefits, such as:
- $350 quarterly credit for over-the-counter medical supplies and approved wellness products.
- 60 One-way trips to healthcare providers per year.
- A personal emergency device.
- Renew Active fitness memberships.
- 20 chiropractic or acupuncture visits per year.
- Eye exams and eyewear.
- hearing aids
- No-cost or low-cost prescription drugs.
- Routine or comprehensive dental care.
- Virtual health visits (telehealth).
AARP PPO plans
AARP Medicare Advantage offers Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) plans in many markets. With a PPO, you have some freedom to choose from among healthcare providers who are either in the plan’s preferred network or outside the network. However, costs are much lower if you use an in-network provider.
Another perk of a PPO is that you usually will not need a referral from your primary care provider to see a specialist.
AARP PFFS plans
AARP also offers Private Fee-For-Service (PFFS) plans in some of its service areas. PFFS plans operate differently than ordinary Part C plans.
Your insurer sets the amount it will pay for each medical service, but if your healthcare provider does not accept the set fee, they do not have to treat you, which means your doctor has the option of providing some services to you and not others.
Medicare Advantage PFFS plans still cover the same care covered by original Medicare. These are Part C plans that offer extra benefits, though they vary from plan to plan. With most PFFS plans, you can see any Medicare-approved doctor. You will not need to choose a primary care provider or get a referral to see a specialist.
There are two things to remember: AARP doesn’t offer PFFS plans in all areas, and premiums are sometimes higher than other plans.
What do aarp medicare advantage plans cover?
AARP Medicare Advantage plans cover Medicare Part A and Part B (Original Medicare). Many of these plans also cover:
- Preventive or comprehensive dental care
- Eye exams and glasses or contact lenses
- Hearing aids
- Fitness programs or gym memberships
- Annual physical examinations
- Flu shots and other vaccines
- Telehealth (virtual visits)
- 24-hour nurse hotline
- In addition to the standard hospital and outpatient medical care, you will get extra benefits, like those listed above. Along with this additional coverage, some plans include alternative health services, such as chiropractic care and acupuncture.
AARP medicare complete provider phone number
If you are a Provider and require assistance, you can contact UnitedHealthcare plans by calling the toll-free General Provider line. Be advised not to call the Customer Service number listed throughout the website—the insurer route providers by their Tax ID. UnitedHealthcare is always available to help providers who may need information, service, or support on network management, provider contracting, and more.
AARP medicare is responsible for taking care of senior citizens of America and people who have any kind of disability. AARP medicare has different plans, including Medicare Advantage Plan and Medigap. Through these plans, it is successfully providing healthcare to millions of deserving senior citizens in America. The starting cost of AARP medicare plans is as low as $16. Through nationwide, state, and community efforts, AARP helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities.