Breast Cancer Awareness

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. It is the annual international health campaign organized by major breast cancer charities and health organizations. Raising awareness for the disease and raising funds for research for cause, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and ultimately a cure, is the goal.

Breast cancer is one of the most common types of cancer among American women. Early detection is the best way to fight the disease. Getting an annual mammogram is the most common way to find breast cancer at an early stage.

Each year in the US close to a quarter of a million women get breast cancer. Less than 1% of breast cancer occurs in men.

Learn more about prevention and detection at: cdc.gov, www.cancer.org and www.cancer.gov

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Open enrollment for Medicare 2019

The Open Enrollment Period for Medicare is coming up: October 15th to December 7th, 2019.  Below is a brief outline of what you need to know.

Medicare is available to United States citizens and to legal residents who have lived in the United States for at least 5 years in a row. It is individual insurance, and does not cover spouses or dependents. It can also be based on age, disability and medical conditions.

Medicare coverage and the costs associated with it are many. It starts with the ABC’s, Parts A, B, C and D. These are the four basic parts and they help pay for certain health care services. Each part has a certain cost. Your Medicare costs will depend on what coverage you choose and what health care services you use.

Original Medicare (Parts A & B) covers many medical and hospital services. It doesn’t cover everything. For example, and as a surprise to some, it does not cover prescription drugs. Prescription drug coverage can by covered through Part D. Part D is separated from Parts A & B. There are also other services NOT covered by Medicare. For example: dental exams, hearing aids, care while traveling outside the US, custodial care, long-term care, chiropractic services to name a few. You may have to pay for these services yourself unless you have other insurance that covers them. Some Medicare Advantage (Part C) plans may help.

Also to consider, is Medicare supplement insurance, which can help pay some out-of-pocket health care costs that Parts A & B do not cover. Plans are offered through private insurance companies. It is up to you whether you buy a plan or not.

There is much more to learn, and more information at:   Medicare.gov.

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