Healthcare News & Stories

Medicare

Kids cooking with adults watching
Medicare

Should You Choose Medicare Supplement or Medicare Advantage?

While Original Medicare offers most people good basic health coverage, it only pays 80% of approved costs concerning doctors, hospitals, and medical procedures. It also typically doesn’t cover the cost of prescription drugs or dental care. As a result, many people enroll in a supplemental insurance plan to help cover the gap. 
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

Five professionally dressed people smiling in an office hallway
Medicare

How To Avoid Paying Medicare Late Enrollment Penalties

You could face late enrollment penalties for not signing up for Medicare at the right time.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

Older couple walking dog
Medicare, Blue Cross NC

What Is the Blue to Blue Rule?

When you choose a Blue Cross NC Medicare plan, you have the freedom to make changes to your plan without underwriting. In addition, members can switch supplement plans at designated times throughout the year. If you live in North Carolina, find out more about how our local Medicare agents can help you get the best Medicare plan for your needs.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC staff

4 people at a desk looking at a laptop
Medicare

How Can Early Retirement Impact Your Health Insurance?

Early retirement, whether desired or forced, can dramatically impact your health insurance coverage. Depending on the circumstances, you may find yourself responsible for funding your own coverage. In addition, the cost of monthly premiums varies widely based on your age, location, and benefit needs. As a North Carolina resident, it’s essential to consider how these additional costs could impact your quality of life in retirement.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

Three women outside smiling at camera
Medicare

How to Get Started with Medicare if You’re Turning 65

Getting Medicare is a significant milestone. If you’re turning 65 soon, it’s a good idea to start preparing so you’ll get your coverage as soon as you are eligible for it. If you’re based in North Carolina, our local Medicare agents can help. 
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

Family eating dinner
Medicare

Am I Eligible For Medicare?

If you’re a U.S. citizen or a permanent legal resident of the United States, then you may be eligible for Medicare if you meet one of the following criteria: You are 65 years old or older. You’re younger than 65, but you have a qualifying disability. You are of any age and have been diagnosed with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, also called Lou Gehrig’s Disease). To qualify as a legal resident, you need to have lived in the United States for at least five consecutive years before applying for Medicare.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

5 older people hugging outside and looking down at that camera
Medicare

How To Get More Benefits with Dual Medicaid-Medicare, D-SNP Plans

Support for North Carolina residents who have Medicare and Medicaid
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

Six people smiling and hugging outside
Medicare

Answers to The 10 Most Common Medicare Questions

Medicare decisions are highly personal and you may have many different questions about your specific situation. But certain questions do seem to come up more often than others. Here are some of the most common Medicare questions and answers that our local agents often hear from North Carolina residents.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

Couple snuggling in a park
Medicare

What Is Medicare Advantage and How Does It Work?

Medicare Advantage plans replace Original Medicare Parts A and B. They’re offered by private companies that are Medicare-approved. If you live in North Carolina and want to find out more information about Blue Cross NC Medicare Advantage plans, our dedicated local agents can help.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

Five professionally dressed people in an office smiling at the camera
Medicare

How Medicare Agents Get Paid

A Medicare insurance agent helps to provide clients with independent advice on various Medicare plans at no cost.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

Portrait of an attractive senior woman with a confident smile on her face.
Medicare

Five Things to Consider when Helping Senior Parents Find Health Insurance

If your senior parent, relative, or friend asks you for help when choosing their NC health insurance coverage, you can take steps to support them.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

Older woman and younger woman sitting on a park bench looking at a phone
Medicare

Helping A Senior Relative Or Friend Find Health Insurance

If your senior parent, relative or friend asks for your help in choosing health insurance coverage, there are several things you can do to support them.
How can I help a senior parent, relative or friend find health coverage?
Whether Medicare or other coverage, there are things to consider when trying to help your senior parent, relative or friend find health insurance. It’s not an easy subject to discuss, and it involves talking about sensitive topics like personal health and finances. It will take time and research to select the best plan. Here are four things to consider.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC Staff

A couple looking at something and smiling
Medicare

How To Get Medicare Dental & Vision Coverage in NC

Regular dental and vision exams are essential to help prevent any health complications and maintain your overall health. If you live in North Carolina, our Medicare agents NC can help you understand how to get the right Medicare dental and vision plans for your needs. Once you know your options, you can plan and budget for your future.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

Pretty focused businesswoman sitting at desk holding cellular talking with client holding pen note on notepad
Health, Affordable Care Act, Individual/Family, Medicare

4 Reasons You Should Use A Health Insurance Agent

Getting help finding the right plan for your budget and health needs is possible by using a health insurance agent or a government navigator.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC Staff

Family picture
Medicare

Answers To 10 Common Medicare Questions

Annual Open Enrollment for Medicare is October 15- December 7; compare plans and options with our licensed Health Plans of NC agents at no cost to you; reach out to the agent on this page for more info or a free quote! 
Medicare decisions are highly personal. And there may be as many different questions about Medicare as there are beneficiaries—maybe more. But certain questions seem to come up more often than others. Here are some of the most common Medicare questions and answers.
How Do I Know What Medicare Coverage Is Right For Me?
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC Staff

People smiling in business clothes
Health, Medicare

Get More Benefits With Dual Medicaid-Medicare D-SNP Plans

Dual Special Needs Plans (D-SNPs) are specialized Medicare Advantage plans for people with
both Medicare and Medicaid and typically offer many extra benefits and features beyond
Original Medicare.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC, Kelly Quinn

Child being fitted for hearing aids
Health, Medicare

What's The Difference Between Medicare & Medicaid? Find Out If You're Eligible

I admit that I didn’t fully understand the difference between Medicare and Medicaid before I started working in health care. I know I’m not alone. It’s confusing, and I’ve come to realize that many people are unfamiliar with how each one works.
It’s important that we understand the options and benefits each program provides, as well as recent changes and enhancements that will offer not only increased access to health care, but better value for North Carolinians.
But first, let’s begin with the basic questions. What is Medicare? What is Medicaid?
HealthPlans of NC

From Blue Cross NC By Brian Edmonds

Open Enrollment Dates
Individual/Family, Affordable Care Act, Medicare

Open Enrollment: Are You Ready?

Ready to enroll in a healthcare plan or update your coverage during the 2021 Annual Enrollment Period?
Health Plans of NC Independent Agents provide full service by addressing all of your questions when choosing a healthcare plan at NO COST TO YOU– including applying for financial assistance to reduce your cost. Why spend time searching for answers online when you can speak to someone directly and get quick and concise answers?
Our agents are with you through the entire enrollment process from plan comparison and selection, subsidy applications if applicable and any document uploads required. Our job is to make it as easy as possible for you to choose a plan that fits both your budget and healthcare needs for you and/or your family. We even have multilingual agents (Spanish and Korean) that can make the process go more smoothly.
HealthPlans of NC

Health Plans of NC Staff

We resolve to make health care simpler.
Individual/Family, Medicare, Affordable Care Act

3 Questions To Ask Before Picking A Health Insurance Plan

Health insurance can be complicated. We’re here to help make it easier. If you’re choosing a plan during this year’s open enrollment period, we can help walk you through the process.
Open enrollment begins on November 1, 2020 and runs through December 15, 2020. With only a month and a half to select a plan that works for you, it’s best to get started early.
As you research plans, here are three questions to ask:
HealthPlans of NC

Blue Cross NC

Man on the phone and desktop
Medicare

Turning 65 Soon? Here's What You Need To Know About Medicare

The year was 1953 and Dwight D. Eisenhower was inaugurated as the 34th President of the US.
The world was introduced to “007” as the first James Bond novel was published, and Walt Disney’s animated film Peter Pan premiered in theatres.
In 1953, the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II occurred in Westminster Abbey, London, England. That same year, “TV Guide” published its 1st issue, featuring actors Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball’s newborn son, Desi Arnaz Jr.
HealthPlans of NC

Chris Privett

Blue Cross Blue Shield NC
Medicare, Blue Cross NC

Blue Cross NC Announces Enhanced Benefits on 2021 Medicare Advantage Plans, Introduces Healthy Blue + Medicare

DURHAM, NC – Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (Blue Cross NC) announced that it will again offer $0 premiums for Medicare beneficiaries in its Blue Medicare Advantage service area along with drug coverage and enhanced benefits for its 2021 Medicare Advantage (MA) plans.
For 2021, Blue Cross NC’s MA plans will continue offering low primary care copays, no-cost gym memberships and coverage for hearing exams and hearing aids. Those with prescription drug coverage on their plan will also see the elimination of the deductible on tier 3 drugs and an enhanced formulary.
Also, for 2021, Healthy Blue + Medicare will be available to those who qualify for Medicare and Medicaid benefits in the following 18 counties: Alamance, Buncombe, Cabarrus, Cumberland, Davidson, Davie, Durham, Forsyth, Gaston, Guilford, Harnett, Mecklenburg, Orange, Rowan, Stokes, Surry, Wake and Yadkin.
HealthPlans of NC

Blue Cross NC Media Center

A couple looking at each other
Medicare

Signing Up For Medicare: Initial Enrollment Period

There are many different types of Medicare Enrollment Periods.  One is your Initial Enrollment Period (IEP).  If you are already receiving Social Security benefits, you will be automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance.)  The same is true for people who receive benefits from the Railroad Retirement Board and people who have received disability benefits for 24 months.  If you are not getting these benefits, you must actively sign up for Medicare through medicare.gov or by visiting your local social security office.  You do not have to start your regular monthly social security benefits in order to get your entitled Medicare benefits.
Initial Enrollment Period
Your initial enrollment period is a 7-month period that:
HealthPlans of NC

Tara O'Neill

Smiling couple looking at baby clothes
Health, Blue Cross NC, Individual/Family, Medicare

Life Changes? When & How To Let Your Health Insurer Know

Getting married, moving to a new home, and adopting children are exciting events in your life. When these changes happen the last thing, you may think about is letting your health insurer know.  It’s important to let us know of these exciting events or other unexpected changes so we can make sure you have the right coverage and we’re able to send important communications to you.
Examples of changes you should report
A Change in Name:
HealthPlans of NC

James LaCorte

Couple smiling at each other
Medicare

Turning 65? The ABC and D of Medicare

f you’re turning 65, you’ve been inundated with correspondence from insurance companies offering supplements and prescription drug plans.  Here is why.  Original Medicare only covers about 80% of many healthcare services.
Original Medicare includes Part A and Part B.
Part A is hospital insurance that helps cover inpatient hospital care, skilled nursing facility care, hospice and home health care.  If you or your spouse has paid 40 quarters into the Social Security Program, then Part A has no monthly premium.
HealthPlans of NC

Tara O'Neill

Ready to get started?
Get a free quote today.
Get Started