What’s the Medicare Saving Program?

Medicare Savings Programs are money-saving opportunities for seniors. That is, if you qualify for them. Not everybody does. If you have lots of assets — we’re talking about cash in the bank, real estate beyond the home you live in, or extra vehicles beyond your car, you might not qualify. This article will help you understand the four different Medicare Savings Programs and their eligibility requirements.

Feel free to reach out to the team at CoverageCoach if you have more in-depth questions about:

Now, on to Medicare Savings Programs.

The 4 Savings Programs

Medicare.gov says some folks can get assistance from the state to pay Medicare premiums and other associated costs. In some cases, Medicare Savings Programs may pay all or part of Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) and all or part of Medicare Part B (senior health insurance) deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments.

As of 2020, The four Medicare Savings Programs and their qualifications are:

  • Qualified Medicare Beneficiary (QMB) — A state-run program for low-income individuals with less than $1,084 monthly income, or $1,457 for married couples. For many, individuals must also own less than $7,860 in assets (or $11,800 for couples). Lastly, this plan helps pay for Medicare costs like deductibles, copayments and so on.
  • Program Specified Low-Income Medicare Beneficiary (SLMB) — Available at the next income level, this program helps pay for Part B (senior health insurance costs). So, this is for persons with a monthly income of less than $1,296, or $1,744 for couples. Lastly, the asset requirements are the same.
  • Qualifying Individual (QI) Program – This program helps pay Part B (health insurance) premiums for people with limited income and resources. Also, you must apply yearly, and QI applications are granted on a first-come, first-served basis. Thus, priority is always given to people who got QI benefits the previous year, and it’s worth noting that one cannot get QI benefits if you qualify for Medicaid. Lastly, individuals can earn $1,456 monthly, or $1,960 for couples.
  • Program Qualified Disabled and Working Individuals (QDWI) Program – which is a special program for individuals who are working, but disabled. As a working individual, the income requirements for QDWI are significantly higher: $4,339 for a working individual and $5,833 for couples.

More to know about the QDWI Medicare Savings Program:

  • The QDWI program pays some or all of the Part A premium. You may qualify if:
    • You meet the income and resource limits
    • You’re disabled, and still working and under 65
    • You lost your premium-free Part A when you returned to the workforce
    • Also, if you aren’t getting any other medical assistance from the state

The Medicare Qualifications Program

We should point out that these programs work a bit differently in Alaska and Hawaii. If you live in one of these states, you might be able to earn more, or keep more assets on hand and still qualify.

At CoverageCoach, we strive to provide accurate and unbiased answers to your questions about Medicare, Medicare Advantage, and Medicare Supplement Insurance plans. We aim to educate! And while these Medicare Savings Programs aren’t programs we provide (they come from your state), we do get asked about them a lot.

We hope we’ve thoroughly answered your questions about which Medicare Savings Program you’re eligible to receive. If not, get in touch! We’d love to provide you with a zero-pressure, zero-cost consultation at any time. So let’s talk!

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