People With Medicare
An Employer or Union Plan
What happens to my coverage?
Your employer or union should let you know if your coverage will continue, or if they think you should join a Medicare drug plan.
What should I do?
- If you have not gotten any information from your employer or union, call them now.
- If your employer’s coverage is “creditable,” meaning it’s as good as the Medicare drug coverage, you do not need to do anything. You should not sign up for a Medicare drug plan, or you may lose your current coverage.
- If your employer’s coverage is not “creditable,” meaning it’s not as good as Medicare coverage, you should consider signing up for a Medicare drug plan.
If your employer coverage is not as good as Medicare's, you may be tempted to drop it and take the Medicare drug coverage. However, you should talk with your employer or union benefits office before deciding to drop your employer or union coverage. This is an important decision, so consider the following issues very carefully:
- Most employer/union insurance plans do not let you drop just the drug coverage. They require you to drop the whole insurance plan, including hospital and medical care coverage.
- If you drop your employer or union coverage, you may not be able to get it back.
- If you drop your employer or union health benefits, you may have to buy insurance to supplement Medicare. You can buy Medigap insurance, or join a Medicare Advantage plan. The Medicare Advantage plans pay more expenses than Original Medicare Part A or B does, and they include a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan. But these plans may cost you more than your employer or union health plan does. They may also give you fewer benefits.
- IMPORTANT: If you change your part of the insurance plan, your spouse or dependents may not be able to get health care and prescription drug benefits.
For these reasons, do not drop your employer or union coverage until you have thought about it carefully.