Medicare Education Made Easy
For over the past 30 years, the state of Texas has provided healthcare to its retired teachers through TRS-Care (Teacher Retirement System). During this time TRS-Care, working together with Medicare, has provided the benefits for hundreds of thousands of retired teachers and their dependents.
This program was originally funded back in 1985 with enough to maintain the fund through fiscal year of 2000. Never the less, the Texas Legislature is under no continued obligations to continue to provide benefits.
In June 2017, the TRS (Teacher Retirement System of Texas) Board of Trustees approved new health plan designs and premiums. These changes went into effect January 1st, 2018.
TRS-Care premiums and deductibles have continued to increase so many retired teachers have begun to leave, instead opting for plan options with original Medicare instead. This is expected to continue since premiums for retired teachers are expected to continue to increase.
For a few folks with expensive medications, we may recommend you stay with TRS-Care. However, retirees with just a few medications or mostly inexpensive generic medications will find a Part D plan to be an extremely affordable option. They can pair this with their Medicare and a Medicare supplement plan for great coverage.
Retirees should also consider coverage for their dependents, if any. Medicare with a Medigap plan will only allow coverage for yourself. You may not carry any dependents on a Medigap plan, although your spouse may qualify for their own coverage if they too are Medicare eligible. If you need to cover family members on your plan, staying with TRS-Care might make the most sense until your dependents are able to obtain other own coverage.
Lastly, dropping TRS-Care means you cannot return to it in the future. Although, with Medicare and Medicare Supplement options being so affordable and comprehensive, this is less of a concern than it used to be.
No doubt the costs for TRS-Care for retired teachers will continue to rise. Fortunately, there are several affordable options along with Medicare which can provide great coverage to the individuals to whom it makes sense. It is very important to carefully review your TRS-Care and Medicare literature provided by the Teacher Retirement system. Get informed so you can make an educated decision for yourself.
We also advise working with an Ashford Insurance Agents who can help you compare your TRS-Care costs against what your other options. We will find out if moving to a Medigap plan makes sense for you. If you are turning 65 soon and enrolling in Part B, you may take advantage of your 6-month window to join any Medigap plan without any medical underwriting. If you are over 65 already, we will explain your rights for guaranteed issue when leaving a TRS plan.
Ashford Insurance is here to help! If you would like to know the options available to you outside of the TRS plan, give us a call.
To get all of the details on the TRS-Care health benefits, click the following link:
Sonia Ashford, “The Medicare Insurance Lady”, has been helping Medicare eligibles in Texas with their Medicare Insurance now since 2005. She has been married to John Ashford since 1982 and they reside in Bedford, Texas. They have six adult children and nine adorable grandchildren that they love to spoil. In Sonia’s limited spare time she enjoys quilting and crafting. They have several pets at home including freshwater fish and a Havanese Shih Tzu named Precious.
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