If you have Medicare and other health coverage, each type of coverage is called a “payer.” When there’s more than one payer, “coordination of benefits” rules decide who pays first. The “primary payer” pays what it owes on your bills first, and then your provider sends the rest to the “secondary payer” to pay. In some cases, there may also be a “third payer.” Be sure you have notified Medicare of any other coverage you have.
Whether Medicare pays first depends on a number of things. Be sure to tell your doctor and other health care providers if you have health coverage in addition to Medicare. This will help them send your bills to the correct payer to avoid delays.
Note: Paying “first” means paying the bill up to the limits of the payer’s coverage. If your medical costs fall outside those your policy defines, you could end up with an outstanding bill no matter how many policies you have in effect.
If you have questions about who pays first, or if your coverage changes, call Medicare’s Benefits Coordination & Recovery Center (BCRC) toll-free at 1-855-798-2627 or 1-800-999-1118. TTY users should call 1-855-797-2627.
The phone number for the Social Security office in your area can be found in the Resources section of this site. In most cases, you are disenrolled the month after your request is made as long as your request was filed before the 10th day of the month. If your request was made after the 10th of the month, you will be disenrolled the first day of the second calendar month after your request was made. You do not need to fill out a disenrollment form if you decide to join another managed care plan. You will be automatically disenrolled from your old plan when your new plan enrollment becomes effective.
Medicare pays for different kinds of durable medical equipment in different ways. Some equipment must be rented, other equipment must be purchased. Your Durable Medical Equipment Regional Carrier can provide more specific information. Check the Resources section of this web site for the phone number for your Durable Medical Equipment Regional Carrier.
You should contact the Social Security Administration to file an application. The phone number for the Social Security office in your area can be found in the Resources section of this site.
You should contact the Social Security Administration to file an application. Check the Resources section of this web site for the phone number of the Social Security Office in your area.