If You Are Actively Employed When You Reach Age 65

When you reach age 65, you become entitled to coverage under Medicare, the health plan administered through the Social Security Administration. Medicare coverage is not automatic; you must enroll through Social Security. You may delay enrolling in Medicare Parts A and B without a penalty as long as you remain covered under the Boston University Health Plan.

Your membership in the Boston University Health Plan will continue as your primary insurance as long as you are eligible and enrolled in a Boston University Health Plan regardless of your age. In the event you lose eligibility or when you retire from Boston University, you should contact the Social Security Administration by calling 1-800-772-1213 to enroll in Medicare. It is important to note that you may be assessed a penalty if you and/or your spouse are over age 65 and do not enroll in Medicare at the time you lose eligibility to participate in the BU Health Plan.

Medicare and the Health Savings Account

A Health Savings Account (HSA) is a tax-advantaged account used in conjunction with an HSA-eligible high deductible health plan (HDHP) that eligible individuals may establish to pay for current and future qualified medical expenses for themselves, their spouse, and their qualifying dependents. The BU Health Savings Plan is an HSA-eligible HDHP. You cannot contribute to a Health Savings Account if you are enrolled in Medicare.

Based on these IRS regulations, you should consider carefully consider your health plan options when enrolling in Medicare.

Coverage through Medicare

Medicare coverage has three parts:

  • Part A: Provides hospital insurance and requires no premium payment from you
  • Part B: Provides supplementary medical insurance and requires a premium payment from you
  • Part D: Provides prescription drug coverage

Additional Coverage

In addition to Medicare Parts A and B, you may also wish to enroll in a non-group health plan that will augment your Part B coverage. This kind of plan, called a “Medicare Supplement,” will fill in some of the gaps in Medicare, giving you more complete coverage.

The University has entered into an agreement with Ovations of United Health Group to offer the nationwide Medicare supplement plans that are available under AARP Health Care Options. Retirees may also obtain their Prescription Drug coverage through this program. The cost of the plan must be paid by the retiree in full. The premium for these plans will be the same as the premium paid by all other AARP members; however, the annual AARP membership fee for the first year will be paid on behalf of the retiree to facilitate enrollment through the University. Also, the University will pay the first month’s premium cost for current employees who enroll in this plan upon official retirement from Boston University. In addition, retirees who enroll in one of the AARP Health Care Options through the University will also have the option to enroll in a discount program offered by United Health Group which provides discounts for cosmetic dentistry, assisted living, hearing care, and wellness care.

For details about AARP Health Care Options, please call 1-800-545-1797. For reimbursement once you have paid the first month’s premium, send a copy of your bill or receipt and your Boston University ID Number to: Boston University Human Resources, Charles River Campus, Boston, MA 02215.

Alternatively, various “Medicare Advantage Plans” are available for your consideration. Go to the Medicare website for a list of plans available as well as what they cover and the costs. Contact Human Resources for more information.