UnitedHealthcare Insurance | AARP Medicare Plans

Strolling the exhibit floor here at Lifeat50+ in Miami, my wife Mary Ann and I came across the UnitiedHealthcare booth. We know them well as they are our Medicare insurance company for the last two years, so we asked to take a photo with them you see displayed at the top of this post.

Baby Boomers Get Medicare Insurance

Two years ago, Mary Ann and I were among the millions of baby boomers turning age 65 and had to decide which Medicare insurance company to provide either Advantage or Supplement policies for us. Oh we got plenty of information, lots of mail almost everyday touting one company or the other. We were overwhelmed and just stacked the medicare mail in one large stack!

However as time drew closer we signed up for basic Medicare as everyone must and went about trying to interpret this huge amount of information being thrown at us. The Medicare.gov site was a big help,  providing  a complete description of benefits of each plan offered in our area and we started to match up plans with each of our needs.

Choosing a Medicare Insurance Company

So with the Medicare plans regulated and set by the government, there was only the matter of which insurance company we would go with, either for supplemental or advantage plans.

We talked with several Insurance companies about Medicare coverage but at the end of the day both Mary Ann and I went with UnitedHealthCare Insurance Company.  I went with the UnitedHealthcare Advantage Plan and Mary Ann went with the UnitedHealthcare Supplemental  Plan.

UnitedHealthCare

The reasons I chose UnitedHealthcare for my Medicare insurance was they are the single  largest health carrier in the US with the biggest network and all my doctors accepted the plan I chose. I liked that they were endorsed by AARP. I also liked that a representative came out to meet with us in person and helped us match a plan to each of our needs.

UnitedHealthcare Delivers For Us

So last Fall Mary Ann and I were heading out to dinner with the neighbors when a pain developed in her side and she ended up in the ICU at Emory Johns Creek Hospital for 7 days. She had her gallbladder removed, but only after an extended bout of heart A-fib. Mary Ann has completely recovered now. Importantly  to us, we didn’t have to worry about the Medicare insurance part. We just gave them Mary Ann’s UnitedHealthcare insurance card along with her Medicare card and that was that.  I just asked Mary Ann if we had to pay anything for her hospital stay and she almost nothing. Her supplemental plan covered the approved charges not covered by Medicare.

Preventive health checkup
Preventive health checkup

UnitedHealthcare’s Optum service has a nurse visit your home for a free evaluation and testing. This is a preventative measure that they take to make sure there are not any overlooked problems needing treatment. This is the photo my wife took of the practitioner testing my blood pressure at my dining table last week.

Needless to say, during last December’s Medicare Open enrollment period we both stayed with our UnitedHealthcare policies. The UnitedHealthcare representative, the same one who came to our home a year earlier to help explain the plans, contacted us asking if we had any questions and to see how things were going. In my book, it is nice to have someone you have met with available for questions at any time.

So seeing the UnitedHealthcare booth at AARP’s Lifeat50+, we just had to stop by and say hello.

AARP Health Care Plans

Boomers At Retirement Age

When I was young, just like some of you, I did not give much thought to retirement.  Being a divorcee and raising two children was my main priority at the time.  I was fortunate to always have a job.  Again, I did what my parents taught me which was: work hard and that is what matters.  Like them though the jobs only allowed for the basic needs of housing, food, clothing, transportation,medical needs and an and occasional vacation.  Saving for retirement did not fit into the plan.  I can remember thinking, just as they did, social security will be enough and that time is a long way off.

That time is now here.  My parents and most of my family have passed on.  The children are raising their families.  Friends have passed.  Social security and Medicare are not stable.  Twenty-five cent candy bars now cost $1.50 or more.  With that said, there is no need to say more because I know that boomers every where know about the economy and etc.  The point that I would like to make is the difference in living and staying.

Many years ago at a conference, I was listening to a speaker who explained the difference in living and staying.  At the time the speech was very humorous but made a lot of sense.   I will never forget what he said.  I still apply it to my life today.  He asked the audience this question.  Have you ever known a person, we will call him George that you see every few years only?  You ask the person when you meet, “where are you living now?”  George replies, ” Well, I had some rough times so I am staying with my Mom over on the East side.”  Then five or ten years pass and you meet George.  Again you ask, “where are you living now?’  George replies, ” I married Martha. I have a good job. I have money in the bank.  We are staying up town in the big house.  Times are good!”  Several years later George pops into your life and once again you ask, “Where are you living now?”  George replies, ” Martha left me. I lost my job. My family is gone. I am staying with a guy I met yesterday over on Fifty Second Street.”  Years go by.  One day you meet George again and ask, “How are you?  Where are you living now?”  George replies, ” Man, I finally learned after all this years about the word living.”  My family is gone, Mom passed away.  My health is good. I live in a small house on Maryland Avenue.  I have some great friends.  We play cards a few times a week and help the homeless.  My daughter, that I left years ago, lives in Virginia.  I am going to become a grandparent.  I have been invited to visit them next month.  I planted vegetables in my small garden.  My tomatoes are huge.  On Fridays, I volunteer at the Senior center.   Life is good!  Today I live, I don’t stay.  I finally learned how to live.  Life is not about what I have, who I am with or how much money is in the bank.  Life is not about staying with a friend or in the the big house.  Life is about living and accepting what is good just for today. I learned that life changes on the outside but it is up to me to change on the inside in order to live.  Thank you for asking and caring for all these years.  You know, I never asked you before but, where are you living?”

So I will ask you as  I have asked myself, “Where are you living at retirement age?”  We boomers are in the last stage of our lives.  Let’s live.  Are you living or staying?  No matter where we are, single, married, rich or poor, we still have the choice to live today.  George learned in time.  Have you?

A facebook friend just posted a quote/photo that I feel would sum this story up.

Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass…. Life is about dancing in the rain!/John Kelly

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