Medicare Savings Programs (MSPs) are another way to get help paying for Medicare costs. To be eligible, you must have Medicare Part A and meet income and asset guidelines.
What are MSPs (Medicare Savings Programs)?
Medicare Savings Programs (MSPs) can save you save on Medicare expenses by helping pay for some of those costs.
There are four kinds of MSPs:
- Qualified Medicare Beneficiary (QMB) Program
- Specified Low-Income Medicare Beneficiary (SLMB) Program
- Qualified Individual (QI) Program, and
- Qualified Disabled and Working Individuals (QDWI) Program.
What are the QMB, SLMB, QI and QDWI programs?
The Qualified Medicare Beneficiary (QMB) Program helps pay premiums for Part A and Part B and also deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments. Your monthly income must be below 100 per cent of the annual federal poverty level which is announced every year.
The Specified Low-Income Medicare Beneficiary (SLMB) Program will only take care of your Medicare Part B monthly premium, provided you are eligible for Part A. The monthly income must be between 100 per cent and 120 per cent of the federal poverty level. States may modify these income guidelines.
The Qualified Individual (QI) program helps low-income individuals pay for their Medicare Part B premiums. You may be eligible if you have income which is between 120 and 135 per cent of the federal poverty level (FPL) and have limited assets.
You must apply every year to avail QI benefits which are granted on a first-come, first-served basis. Those individuals who availed benefits in the previous year get priority.
The Qualified Disabled and Working Individual (QDWI) Program pays only for Medicare Part A premiums. You may be eligible if
- you are disabled, under 65 and working, and
- you have lost your premium-free Part A coverage, and
- you are ineligible for any medical assistance from the state you live in (Medicaid), and
- you meet the income and resource limits set by your state.
Can I qualify for any of the MSPs?
Any individual who is enrolled in Medicare, either because of age or disability with limited income and assets can qualify for MSPs.
Rules to assess income and assets (stocks, property etc) vary by State. Make sure you understand the guidelines established by your State.
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