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AARP Heath Insurance
Old 06-25-2009, 10:58 AM   #1
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AARP Heath Insurance

I did a search first and did not find much on the AARP Aetna health insurance option, so thought I would share my situation for some advice, thoughts.

I am currently on COBRA that will run out in 4 months. I do have an option to get retiree insurance from a previous employer for $600 per month for both my DW and I. It is not very good with $2000 ded, no coverage for doctor visits or prescriptions, standard coverage for hospital and only $1MM cap. Of course is guaranteed with no underwriting. Goes up about 10% per year in premium costs

I have looked at the cheapest Aetna option which is $3000 ded, no doc visits or prescription, standard hospital and $2MM cap. Starts at $400 but know would get hit with 25-50% add on either at start or perhaps 6 months in. Who knows how much from there.

We are both healthy, knock on wood, and hate to even buy insurance but know it is a must (Even though you have to fight for what is due when the time comes)

I have looked at many internet quotes and find, for similar coverage, Aetna is the cheapest.

With all that, is it even worth going thru the hassle in applying with Aetna or should I just go for the retiree benefit, even though it is not that good. Any experience with Aetna.

I was thinking if I got Aetna, my retiree insurance could always be my back up.

Thoughts?

Thanks
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Old 06-25-2009, 11:07 AM   #2
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Do you have the option of going back to the previous employer's retiree insurance at a later time, or is this a one-time offer which you can't come back to if you refuse it now?

That would likely influence my decision, as would how long it would be before we were eligible for Medicare.
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Old 06-25-2009, 11:15 AM   #3
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I can go back to the retiree insurance option at anytime. I am 56, DW 59, so we will need insurance for many years.

So there would be no problem getting private, if possible, and than going to the retiree option anytime before 65.

Thanks
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Old 06-25-2009, 11:25 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by oliverdickens View Post
I can go back to the retiree insurance option at anytime. I am 56, DW 59, so we will need insurance for many years.
Wow -- seems like a recipe for massive "adverse selection."

But as long as that remains an option, I'd use it to my advantage: I'd file the ex-employer group plan away as Plan B in case you develop "conditions" that would make you uninsurable (or severely jack up your rates) with an individual policy. But as long as you're healthy I suspect you'd be better off with an individual plan for now. You can always re-evaluate each year, I assume.
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Old 06-25-2009, 11:36 AM   #5
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Please be absolutely sure you can go back to your employers plan before you make such a move.
If I take private coverage I am no longer eligible for my employers plan.
Just be sure to cover your base's and I'm only trying to help,
Steve
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Old 06-25-2009, 11:38 AM   #6
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Please be absolutely sure you can go back to your employers plan before you make such a move.
Good point. To be able to opt back into group coverage at any time with no medical underwriting or exclusions seems too good to be true.
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Old 06-25-2009, 11:40 AM   #7
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You might want to look over AARP being in bed with AETNA and kicking back as well as having quirky exclusions which are gotcha's. A lot of former AARP members claim to have been royally messed over by this. There have been some MSNBC (I think it was MSNBC) hour long specials on this, DUE DILIGENCE is essential.
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Old 06-25-2009, 01:04 PM   #8
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Thanks for all the advice. Last time I asked, my former employer did state I had one of the plans that afforded one to option in and out once each year. I specifically asked if I enrolled in their plan, than got a job with insurance, could I opt out of theirs and than come back once I did not have the job with insurance. They said yes. Assume it would be the same as with private insurance, but will certainly ask again.

As to the Aetna tie in with AARP, that really has be concerned as well. That is why I was looking for some advice based on other experiences. Seems there are no insurance companies that will not look to hose the client so it is difficult to decide where to go.

Thanks for the advice and looking forward to any further advice or experiences with Aetna.
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Old 06-25-2009, 01:12 PM   #9
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One other thing is to get it in writing via the benefits SPD from the employer. Many employers have it available on line and I would get a hard copy and read (and keep) it to make sure you can re-enter the plan. Most do not allow that except for full service retirees and I am not sure what status you left with from your post.

Also, remember a bird in the hand... You know the plan and it sounds as if it is partially siubsidized. Aetna's is not.
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Old 06-25-2009, 01:32 PM   #10
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I was downsized after 21 years with employer, so not the full 30 years. That was back in 2000. I will certainly do as you suggest.

Yes the plan with employer is partially subsidized, but still $600 per month and is admistrated by BCBS, which is an issue all on it's own. It is a delimma for sure.
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Old 06-28-2009, 01:06 PM   #11
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I'm in the process of purchasing individual insurance. I have found using an insurance broker to be extremely helpful and I recommend you use one. They cost you nothing and a good one is full of information and tips. If you are like me, you will learn about plans (and policy features) available in your area you have never heard of.

It was easy for me to find a good one as I live in a small town and it is easy to know the reputation of a business.
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Old 06-28-2009, 03:11 PM   #12
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We have Aetna insurance. A high deductible family plan with $2400 deductible. We rarely use it. Prescriptions and sick visits are out of pocket until the deductible is met. After that, 80% paid by ins. Physicals are free. It is employer provided and costs $25/month. Good service for what little bit we have used it. Great online interface for claims, history, medical cost research, mail order rx available online with instant price quotes for comparing drugs and comparing to local pharmacies.
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