CHM and Medicare (part 3)

From the December 2018 issue of Heartfelt Magazine.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of this series.

Does CHM share bills for nursing home or travel expenses? Our goal is to help you prepare for unexpected events and to help you as best we can to be comfortable as you grow older.

According to the CHM Guidelines, bills for nursing homes are ineligible for sharing. Long-term care insurance is a great option for people who desire nursing home benefits. More information about costs is available by contacting your local insurance agent.

Medical transportation and traveling expenses are defined separately in the CHM Guidelines. At the Gold level, CHM cannot share bills incurred for medical transportation from the site of your emergency to a medical facility.

However, bills for medical transportation are eligible for sharing at the Gold level if 1) you are transferred from one hospital to another because the first facility cannot adequately care for you; 2) you’re transported to the nearest hospital able to provide the necessary treatment; and 3) you’re in a life-threatening situation. Medical transportation bills on the Silver and Bronze level are ineligible for sharing.

Travel expenses are not eligible for sharing.

Will CHM help with my medical costs if I’m away from home? CHM encourages members to get the medical care they need without delay. Therefore, you should seek treatment from any doctor or hospital (to be eligible for sharing the treatment must be within CHM Guidelines). The ministry doesn’t have a provider network from which you must choose. This is also true for Medicare-eligible members: you are free to choose your own healthcare provider(s). (Editor's note: See a directory of providers our members have recommended).

What happens if I receive treatment from a doctor or hospital that doesn’t accept Medicare? Most healthcare providers accept payment from Medicare. However, Medicare will work with you and send checks directly to you to pay your providers who don’t accept Medicare—similar to CHM’s method. Will this affect how you submit your bills to CHM? Not much.

If your healthcare providers don’t accept Medicare, you’ll need to file a Form CMS-1490s with Medicare and send CHM your updated Medicare Summary Notice (MSN) when you receive it. (See Medicare's website for more information.)

Do Bring-a-Friend credits still apply if I have both Medicare and CHM? A great advantage of being a CHM member is that you can receive a free month of membership for each new membership you bring into CHM. Members who participate in Medicare are included. Referring friends will earn you one free month when your friend submits their third monthly financial gift.

When should I let CHM know I’m dropping because of Medicare? Though we encourage you to keep CHM as a Medicare supplement, the decision is, of course, yours. You can discontinue your membership at any time. Please allow 30 days for the cancellation to take effect.

If you’ve submitted medical bills to CHM that haven’t been shared at the time you cancel your membership, please be aware that the Guidelines state that your medical bills will not be eligible for sharing.

Editor’s note: The CHM Guidelines state that members or prospective members of Medicare-eligible age must have Medicare parts A and B. Members of Medicare age who choose not to participate can only receive help with medical bills in the amount that Medicare would not have paid (typically 20 percent). The outstanding balance will be your responsibility.

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