Speak with a licensed sales agent
1-800-991-4407 / TTY 711
10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern, Monday to Friday

What You Need to Know About Medicare Enrollment if You Have ALS

medicare-enrollment-als

We’re here to make understanding Medicare and Medicare enrollment easier. If you have Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS/Lou Gehrig’s Disease), here are a few things that are important to know.

You’re automatically enrolled with disability benefits.

Individuals with ALS are automatically enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B (Original Medicare) when disability benefits through Social Security begin paying out. You should receive a Medicare card by mail when you’re enrolled. Original Medicare includes coverage for things like hospital stays and medically-necessary care, including doctor visits and durable medical equipment.

Your Medicare enrollment isn’t delayed 24 months.

Typically, early enrollment in Medicare because of disability has a 24-month delay after receiving disability benefits, but this doesn’t apply to individuals with ALS. Medicare coverage begins with your disability benefits.

You may be eligible before age 65.

Medicare eligibility typically begins at age 65, but eligibility as a result of a disability can happen at any age. You may even be eligible for certain programs to help with Medicare costs.

You can get additional benefits through a Medicare Advantage Plan.

Original Medicare doesn’t include coverage for a number of important benefits, including vision, dental, hearing, fitness, wellness, and prescription drugs. Medicare Advantage Plans—offered by private insurance companies—include your Original Medicare coverage and may include many of these major benefits all in one convenient plan. On top of these major coverage areas, Medicare Advantage Plans may even include things like home health aides, transportation to and from medical appointments, and a budget for over-the-counter medical purchases.

You may be eligible for a Special Needs Plan.

Some Medicare Advantage Plans are designated as Special Needs Plans (SNP). These plans are only open to individuals with certain conditions or situations. Neurological disorders are a qualifying condition.

Special Needs Plans typically offer benefits specific to the condition they’re designed for, or include additional specialists in the plan network.

Prescription drug coverage is available.

Original Medicare doesn’t include coverage for prescription drugs. You can obtain this coverage through standalone Prescription Drug Plans (Part D) or through Medicare Advantage Plans with prescription drug benefits. Special Needs Plans typically include this coverage as well.

Get Help with Medicare Enrollment

If you have any questions about the Medicare plans you might be eligible for or want to enroll in a plan, we’re just a phone call away. Call 1-800-991-4407 / TTY 711 from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern, Monday to Friday for your personal no-cost consultation with a Medicare Advocate. You can find, compare, and enroll in Medicare Advantage Plans through the Medicare Online Enrollment Portal.