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Social Security- Questions and Answers

By Erin Thompson, Public Affairs Specialist in Toledo, OH

Guest Column



Is it true that if you have low income you can get help paying your Medicare premiums?



Yes. If your income and resources are limited, your state may be able to help with your Medicare Part B premium, deductibles, and coinsurance amounts. State rules vary on the income and resources that apply. Contact your state or local medical assistance, social services, or welfare office, or call the Medicare hotline, 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227), and ask about the Medicare Savings Programs. If you have limited income and resources, you also may be able to get help paying for prescription drug coverage under Medicare Part D. Call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY users should call 1-800-325-0778) or visit any Social Security office.

Also, see our publication, Medicare (Publication 10043), at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/10043.html. For even more information, visit our website at www.socialsecurity.gov.



How do I get a copy of the form, Application for Help with Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Costs?



If you wish to apply for Extra Help with Medicare prescription drug plan costs, we recommend you use our online application at www.socialsecurity.gov/i1020/. You can find instruction sheets in 15 different languages to help you understand the English application at www.socialsecurity.gov/prescriptionhelp.

If you prefer not to fill out this application on the Internet, you can call our toll-free number, 1-800-772-1213, to ask for a paper application. Also, you can make an appointment at your local Social Security office to apply for Extra Help with Medicare prescription drug plan costs. If you are deaf or hard of hearing, call our toll-free TTY number, 1-800-325-0778. Representatives are available Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.



If I call 1-800-772-1213, can a Social Security representative take my application for Medicare prescription drug help over the phone?



If an interviewer is available when you call the 800 number, he or she can take your application over the phone. If an interviewer is not immediately available, we can schedule a telephone appointment for you. For the fastest and most convenient way to apply for Medicare prescription drug help, go online to www.socialsecurity.gov/prescriptionhelp.



Where can I find general information about Medicare benefits?



Social Security determines whether people are entitled to Medicare benefits, but the program is administered by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). You can visit CMS’s Medicare website at www.medicare.gov, or call them at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). Online or by phone, you can find answers to all your Medicare questions at CMS.


Will my eligibility for the Extra Help with Medicare prescription drug plan costs be reviewed and, if so, how often?



If you get the Extra Help, Social Security may contact you to review your status. This reassessment will ensure you remain eligible for Extra Help and receive all the benefits you deserve. Annually, usually at the end of August, we may send you a form to complete: Social Security Administration Review of Your Eligibility for Extra Help. You will have 30 days to complete and return this form. Any necessary adjustments to the Extra Help will be effective in January of the following year. Go to www.socialsecurity.gov/prescriptionhelp for more information.






Copyright © 2019 by [The Sojourner's Truth]. All rights reserved.
Revised: 01/17/19 08:58:10 -0500.

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