Ask The Experts: Retirement

By Reg Jones

Medicare for future retiree with health problems

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Q. I plan on retiring at the end of 2014. I have been with the service 33½ years under CSRS. I have a couple of incurable medical issues, so I go to the doctor and hospital regularly. I have always paid into FEHP and have had BC/BS for more than five years. My question is regarding medical insurance. Do I have to obtain Medicare parts B, C and D? I will be continuing to pay into my FEHP when I retire but want to know if I should get any of those other plans because I do not want to get stuck with big hospital co-pays and/or prescription bills in the event that my health deteriorates. I hear people talking about this, but I don’t want to listen to hearsay because I don’t know much about it and I am a little confused.

A. While you don’t have to enroll in Medicare Parts B, C and D, whether you should is up to you. You’ll have to compare what your FEHB plan coverage will be with and without those enrollments. Once you become eligible for Medicare, the way your plan will treat your bills changes.

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