Medicare in South Carolina is a fairly standardized, but it has some quirks unique to the geographic location (as do all states). Let’s start with the basics and work from there.
Medicare is a federal program that provides basic health insurance to anyone aged 65 or older and some other select individuals. As a federal program, it varies very little from state to state, but those few variations can be quite important.
South Carolina Healthy Connection is the local office that administers Medicaid in the state. Even though the benefits are admitted through the state, they are federally funded and must follow federal guidelines.
Medicare Supplements in South Carolina
Medicare supplements (also known as Medigap or MediSup) are there to cover the medical expenses not covered by Medicare. These Medicare Supplement plans are provided by private insurers that have been approved by the government for this role. Medicare Supplement plans cover care such as vision, dental, hearing aids, or private nursing services, among others, all of which are not usually covered by Medicare.
Like in most other states, there are ten standardized Medicare Supplement plans in South Carolina. These are all labeled by letter. Every plan in each letter category will provide the same as the others in that letter category no matter which insurer is providing the Medicare Supplement plan.
The best times to apply for a Medicare Supplement plan in South Carolina is during the Medigap Open Enrollment Period (OEP), which lasts six months and begins on the first day of the month that you turn 65 years old (or older) when you are already enrolled in Medicare. You can submit for Medicare Supplement plan enrollment to any insurer that provides them without the submission of a medical underwriting check. It is possible to get a Medicare Supplement plan outside of that six month period, but the insurer can then ask for your medical background.
Supplement Plan A
Supplement Plan B
Supplement Plan C
Supplement Plan D
Supplement Plan F
Supplement Plan G
Supplement Plan K
Supplement Plan L
Supplement Plan M
Supplement Plan N
How to Enroll in Medicare in South Carolina
Now that you have the basics of Medicare supplements, how do you enroll into Medicare in South Carolina?
First thing’s first: you need to be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident of the country for at least five years in order to qualify for Medicare. If you meet these requirements, you will be automatically rolled when you hit age 65. Disabled residents will be automatically enrolled if they receive social security. Patients with Lou Gehrig’s Disease (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) or end-stage renal disease are qualified for early Medicare enrollment.
If you have worked for a railroad, you can receive certain Medicare benefits early for 24 consecutive months. In order to do this, you’ll need to contact the Railroad Retirement Board.
If you need to apply for Medicare manually due to disability, medical need, or bureaucratic mix-up (it happens), there are a few ways to do it in South Carolina:
You can see if you qualify for enrollment in a Medicare Advantage Plan, Medicare Supplement plan, and/or Medicare Prescription Plan, you can contact the plan provider (insurance company) directly or call855-494-0097 to speak to a licensed agent in your area.
Medicare is a very important program for seniors and other qualified recipients that can help take the burden of medical care off of your bank account. If you think you qualify for Medicare and Medicare Supplement plans as a South Carolina resident, please contact BGA Insurance Group today.