Original MedicareOriginal Medicare is a fee-for-service health insurance program available to Americans aged 65 and older and some individuals with disabilities. Original Medicare is provided by the federal government and is made up of two parts: Part A (hospital insurance) and Part B (medical insurance). in West Virginia features hospital (Part A) and medical (Part B) coverage with the option of adding drug and supplemental coverage.
Most people are eligible at age 65, which opens the door to Medicare AdvantageMedicare Advantage (Medicare Part C) is health insurance for Americans aged 65 and older that blends Medicare benefits with private health insurance. This typically includes a bundle of Original Medicare (Parts A and B) and Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (Part D). plans that replace Original Medicare while offering additional benefits like dental and vision.
Medicaid in West Virginia covers similar benefits, but eligibility is based on need regardless of age.
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Your options for applying for Medicare in WV include:
- Enrolling online with the Social Security Administration. 
- Visiting a local Social Security office. 
- Enrolling over the phone at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY: 1-800-325-0778).
Medicare is a federal program that provides affordable healthcare for older Americans nearing retirement. At age 65, you can enroll in Part A (also known as “hospital insurance”), Part B (“medical insurance”) or both.
If you decide to stay enrolled in Parts A and B, you have the option to add Part D to cover your prescription expenses. You may also choose to add Medigap, (another name for Medicare Supplement insurance) that helps fill in the gaps in out-of-pocket costs like copays and coinsurance. Most Medicare Advantage plans also include drug and supplemental coverage.
Who is Eligible for Medicare in West Virginia?
If you’re a U.S. citizen and are age 65 or older, you qualify for Medicare in West Virginia. You’re also eligible regardless of your age if:
- You have End Stage Renal Disease or Lou Gehrig’s disease (also known as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis or ALS).
- You have received 24 monthly payments of Social Security Disability Insurance or Railroad Board benefits.
If you are receiving Social Security benefits before you turn 65, you may be automatically enrolled in Original Medicare. If not, you have to apply. Your first chance to sign up is during your Initial Enrollment Period, which starts three months before the month of your 65th birthday and ends three months after you turn 65.
What is the Income Limit to Receive Medicare?
Your income isn’t a factor in your ability to sign up for Medicare plans in West Virginia (it’s a different story with Medicaid).
When it comes to Part A of Original Medicare, earned income is a positive. If you or your spouse has worked at least 10 years, you don’t have to pay a monthly premium for Part A.
For Part B, higher-income earners may have to pay more than the standard premium. In 2021, the standard monthly premium for Part B was $148.50, and it increased only if your individual income on your 2020 tax return was more than $88,000. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services estimates that only 7 percent of Medicare beneficiaries are impacted by this increase. 
Who is Eligible for Medicaid in West Virginia?
Each state has its plan for administering Medicaid, a federal/state program founded alongside Medicare in 1965 that helps those facing a financial need and/or disability regardless of age.
The state of West Virginia oversees the Medicaid program for the state’s residents, offering coverage to all individuals in need with some programs geared toward children and pregnant women. In 2020, assistance was available to West Virginians who earned up to 138% of the Federal Poverty Level  (ages 6-65) and in some cases earned up to 190% of the Federal Poverty Level (pregnant women and their children). 
What is the Average Cost of a Medicare Advantage plan?
According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the average monthly premium for a Medicare Advantage plan in 2020 was $23.63. 
Every Medicare Advantage plan in West Virginia must offer, at least, the same level of coverage as Original Medicare Parts A and B. In 2020, most people didn’t pay a monthly premium for Part A, while most people paid the standard monthly premium of $144.60 for Part B.
Medicare Advantage and Original Medicare have different coverage areas. You can use Original Medicare nationwide, but Medicare Advantage is limited to a provider network. The limited network allows Medicare Advantage in West Virginia to often offer more affordable options.
What is the Best Medicare Plan to Get?
In the case of Original Medicare in OK, there’s only one plan — Parts A and B, which does open the option to add Part D and Medigap coverage from private insurance companies.
In the case of Medicare Advantage in West Virginia, there are many plans.
- Some Medicare Advantage plans mirror Original Medicare but are more affordable.
- Some Medicare Advantage plans include options for dental, vision and hearing coverage.
- Some Medicare Advantage plans offer assistance with transportation costs or over-the-counter needs.
- Some may offer all of the above!
Medicare Advantage plans offer a variety of benefits that can be overwhelming. However, it’s simple for a licensed insurance agent at GoHealth to analyze your needs and figure out which plan option is the right fit for you.
Table reflects the latest Beneficiary Demographics data: 2018, All Beneficiaries by State, Centers of Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)
Average HCC Score: The Hierarchical Condition Category score gauges a population’s overall health. The score is based on a value of 1.0. Populations with an HCC score of less than 1.0 are considered relatively healthy. The score can be used to estimate health costs.
WV SHIP AND SMP - Medicare counseling
What should I know about WV SHIP and SMP?
The State Health Insurance Assistance Program and the Senior Medicare Patrol offer free Medicare guidance and monitoring.
West Virginia Bureau for Children and Families
Phone lines open M-F, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
What should I know about the Bureau for Children and Families?
This department administers Medicare Premium Assistance Programs (aka Medicare Savings Programs) for West Virginia residents in need.
West Virginia Bureau of Senior Services
1-304-558-3317 or 1-877-987-3646http://www.wvseniorservices.gov/
What should I know about the West Virginia Bureau of Senior Services?
From assistance with transportation to meals, the bureau aims to be “West Virginia’s premier advocate for seniors.”
West Virginia Bureau of Medical Services
What should I know about the West Virginia Bureau of Medical Services?
Administers the state’s Medicaid program for West Virginia residents.
Speak with an insurance agent that is licensed in West Virginia about your Medicare questions.1-855-792-0088 TTY: 711
Monday - Friday, 8 AM - 9 PM CT
Medicare & Medicaid
If you have general questions about Medicare in WV, or need help with current Medicare benefits.1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227)
Social Security Administration
You can reach the SSA by phone for general questions. Not all questions can be answered over the phone.
Also, SSA.gov provides online resources for the following: Review information, apply for benefits, or manage your account online
Speak to SSA Representative, Monday - Friday, 8 AM - 7 PM ET